Written by Greg Auman
TAMPA — As the Bucs work to get quarterback Jameis Winston fully recovered from a right shoulder injury to make a healthy return Sunday, his treatment has included a blood procedure known as platelet-rich plasma therapy.
"PRP has been around for a while, but it’s gotten much more popular in the past five years or so as one of these so-called biologic treatments for injuries," said Dr. Seth Gasser, vice president and director of sports medicine at the Florida Orthopaedic Institute. "When getting back on the field is really important, it can be another option to try to speed their safe return to play."
A PRP injection is also known as "blood spinning" because the procedure uses a centrifuge to spin a sample of a patient’s blood, isolating the platelets from the rest. Platelets are crucial in tissue regeneration, and the process creates a concentrated sample — up to seven times as many platelets — that can be safely injected into the injured area to speed recovery.
"The main reason for doing PRP in most cases is to optimize the healing process and minimize the recovery time," said Dr. Ricardo Colberg of the Andrews Sports Medicine & Orthopaedic Center in Birmingham, Ala., which handles about 150 PRP treatments a year. "PRP is estimated to decrease the healing time to roughly half to two-thirds quicker recovery. Let’s say from three months to four to six weeks."
Winston injured his throwing shoulder in the Bucs’ game at...