Riewoldt relies on blood jabs

Written By Unknown on Selasa, 19 Maret 2013 | 12.50

2013 preview: Fox Footy expert Brad Johnson says the Saints need to find the next group of stars to take the baton from Nick Riewoldt and Co.

St Kilda captain Nick Riewoldt catches his breath. Source: Getty Images

ST KILDA captain Nick Riewoldt continues to be injected with his own blood to help prolong his career.

Riewoldt will rely on a German medical technique to nurse a degenerative left knee injury through the AFL season.

"Yeah, it's something I've got to manage and I think ultimately it will be the thing that probably forces me to retire. But certainly I've got a few years left yet,'' he said today.

"It has been ongoing for a while now. I managed it pretty well last year. I was able to put in a pretty solid year until I got injured (missed the last three rounds) with a totally unrelated injury.''

Riewoldt has the Orthokine therapy at the Olympic Park Sports Medicine Centre. The treatment remove proteins from the blood that inhibit inflammation and are injected to the affected joint.

"They take your blood and - am I allowed to say inject? - and I've had some pretty good success from that,'' Riewoldt said.

"If I start to get sore and swollen, it's something I can go to. So, we have that up our sleeve.

"It's a concentrated burst. You have six weeks go of it and that lasts for six months.

"They spin the blood and take out the concentrated anti-inflammatory part of your blood and then inject it back.''

American basketballer Kobe Bryant and baseball ace Alex Rodriguez are among other sportsmen to use the technique.

Riewoldt said the treatment allows him to continue to train during the season and play a match at full capacity.

On the long-term prognosis for the knee, the Saints skipper said: "If I want to go and run marathons, it's probably going to be an issue. But if I want to walk 18 holes at golf, I should be fine.''

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