RENTON The Seahawks apparently got a group deal on special blood treatments for injuries and recoveries from surgeries.
Coach Pete Carroll said following Monday’s practice five starting players are away from the team getting the same regenokine, blood-warming-and-spinning treatment for using anti-inflammatory properties from which Pro Bowl linebacker K.J. Wright returned last week.
Those missing this week for the treatment are wide receiver Tyler Lockett, Pro Bowl defensive ends Michael Bennett and Cliff Avril, left guard Luke Joeckel and outside linebacker Michael Wilhoite.
Add Pro Bowl special-teams player and linebacker D.J. Alexander going away for regenokine last week after Wright returned, and seven Seahawks will have had the treatment this month in the remaining weeks before the season begins Sept. 10 at Green Bay.
Carroll said the team sent them away now without concern any will not be ready for the opener.
“No. We are doing it all to make sure that they are strong going into the start of the season,” Carroll said.
Carroll said the team’s faith in what some see as an unproven process is “that our guys that have gone through it are really positive about it, brought back really good reinforcement thoughts. We are just kind of banking on that.
“We’ve got different situations on guys. We are anxious to see what we can find out.”
Lockett broke his tibia and fibula in his leg Dec. 24. He was in uniform and a full participant in pregame warmups before Seattle’s third preseason game last week, against Kansas City.
“He practiced well last week,” Carroll said.
“We want to make sure we get him through. The idea was the best (for his return to playing) was the last game of the preseason, that’s what we thought. But then after we saw him last week we had a little bit of a new thought here that we want to go ahead and get him this treatment and take care of it and really make him strong so he can battle next week and play in the game.”
Avril had surgery this offseason performed by renowned sports-hernia specialist Dr. William C. Meyers. Bennett had arthroscopic knee surgery to repair cartilage damage last fall and has played through a painful toe issue in recent years. Joeckel had season-ending knee surgery in October when he was playing for Jacksonville. Wilhoite has missed the last two weeks with a knee injury, after appearing to seize the starting job at strongside linebacker opposite Wright.
There have been conflicting literature on the Food and Drug Administration’s approval for regenokine, what was first founded in Germany and called orthokine.
A German physician, Peter Wehling, invented in the 1980s a process using one’s own blood -- specifically the body's own anti-inflammatory proteins and human-growth elements -- to end or ease pain and chronic injuries. It’s an anti-inflammatory process, drawing one’s own blood and heating it, then injecting that changed blood into the pained joint.
Retired NBA superstar Kobe Bryant, retired baseball slugger Alex Rodriguez, professional golfer Fred Couples and even Pope John Paul II have had the procedure, which costs as much as $10,000.
Doctors Wehling and Jens Hartmann run a clinic in Dusseldorf, Germany, that is viewed as the foremost place to do the therapy. In 2013, Dr. Wehling was said to have done the procedure on 30 to 40 NFL players. At that time the treatment process took four days.
But LifeSpan Medicine, clinic in Santa Monica, California, with offices also in New York and Dallas, lists regenokine as one the “regenerative” therapies it practices -- again, without FDA approval for use in this country.
Joeckel’s absence this week means Oday Aboushi will move over from his competition with Mark Glowinski to become the starting right guard. Aboushi will start at left guard Thursday in the preseason finale at Oakland, when Seahawks starters aren’t likely to play much.