McDonald Goes the Distance in Treating His Concussion
Will Blues fans ever know what it’s like to have a full roster healthy at once? You could probably say this about every NHL team as injuries are a part of the game and as one player tells me once you play your first shift of the season you’re never 100% again.
While that maybe true, Blues fans as well as their coaching staff would love to have a complete lineup in time to make a run down the stretch. The likelihood of that happening seems iffy. It’s like a revolving door around here, they get a player back only to lose another one shortly thereafter.
Alex Steen is the latest to go down and as we reported he failed his most recent baseline test as he recovers from a concussion. Guys like T.J. Oshie and Roman are playing through injuries but certainly less than 100%. No wonder Dr. Rick Lehman has joined Tom Stillman in his pursuit to buy the Blues. Anytime you can add to your medical team I guess it’s probably a good idea.
Andy McDonald is considered the Blues best forward when healthy. He’s missed virtually the entire season (played three games) with a concussion. The third head injury he’s suffered in a career that includes a Stanley Cup championship in 2007 with Anaheim.
McDonald is skating and looks better everyday. When he “sheds the red” no-contact jersey fans can start to get excited about a McDonald return.
Over the last several weeks McDonald endured 70 1 ½ hour treatments in a hyperbaric chamber. The hyperbaric oxygen treatments are designed to aid healing and cut down recovery time. In addition to the hyperbaric treatments, McDonald also was given neurofeedback treatment, a non-medicated approach that trains the brain to function better. According to centerforbrain.com, neurofeedback is an innovative approach that harnesses the brains ability to change itself.
Former NHL star Paul Kariya introduced McDonald to Dr. Daniel Amen, a well known brain imaging specialist. Dr. Amen is also a best selling author who’s considered among the best in the world at treating brain injuries. In addition to treating McDonald, Dr. Amen has treated over 100 former NFL players who’ve suffered from post concussion syndrome.
The closest Dr. Amen clinic is in Jackson, Tennessee where McDonald traveled to receive more than half of his treatments. He would spend Monday-Friday in Tennessee receiving two treatments a day. He’d return to St. Louis on the weekends before the travel became too much. After two weeks of traveling back and forth McDonald would eventually stay in Tennessee for two straight weeks receiving 40 sessions in all.
The remaining 30 sessions McDonald received in Southern California.
McDonald has been feeling better for several days now and continues to skate everyday. He says he doesn’t feel right and won’t return until he does. The Blues could certainly use his speed as well as his ability to perform in the shootout.
More to come,
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