Bears RB Forte turns to ex-teammate for medical help

Matt Fortereceived a plasma injection Tuesday in hope of speeding up the healing process of his sprained right knee. The very next day he visited the house of a former teammate to try out another unconventional rehab method in order to return to the field to help the Chicago Bears salvage what a few weeks ago seemed like a guaranteed playoff berth.

San Diego Chargers defensive tackle Tommie Harris told the Chicago Tribune he let Forte use a $20,000 hyperbaric chamber stored in the basement of his suburban Chicago home.

The chamber aides in recovery by enhancing levels of oxygen to injured body parts, and the hope is that the method would shorten Forte's time on the Bears' injured list with a Grade 2 knee sprain he suffered last Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs.

Sung Kim, a doctor at Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, told the Tribune that this kind of treatment particularly can be effective for muscle injuries.

Harris told the Tribune he bought the chamber during his second season in Chicago, and he would regularly use it, breathing its pure oxygen.

"I used to use it every night," Harris told the Tribune. "I feel like the body will heal itself in time. Because of our (limited) time, we have to rush the healing process."

The Tribune said that Forte could not be reached for comment Thursday for this story.

Grade 2 knee sprains typically sideline players for four weeks, and Bears coach Lovie Smith told reporters this week he expects his star running back to return before the end of the season.

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