Vineyard Worker Health Program Success Story:
Back to Making Wine

Margarito was only 16 years old when he moved from Mexico to Napa Valley.  He got a job in the wine industry, first working as a cooper (making wine barrels), then transitioned to winemaking. He is currently the Cellar Master for Castello Di Amorosa in Calistoga. Margarito recently received treatment for an injured elbow through the Foundation’s Vineyard Worker Health Program (VWHP). His injury had caused him chronic pain, both at work and in his daily life. “I was lifting weights and suddenly felt severe pain in my elbow. After that, it hurt consistently and affected my job for a year, and then the pain got much worse. It got to the point where if I wanted to put a CD in my CD player, I couldn't even reach to do that anymore.”  Margarito was initially treated with steroid injections, which helped temporarily.1


When the pain kept returning, Margarito was provided with a platelet-rich plasma (PRP) procedure, which ultimately healed the damaged tissue and eliminated the pain. “I did a lot of reading about PRP to find out more about it, because there are a lot of workers who get injured in the wine industry, but most people are skeptical of this type of procedure – there are misunderstandings about what PRP actually is.”


After doing his research, Margarito received the PRP treatment at no cost, thanks to the VWHP.  He went right back to work, initially doing light duty and after a few days, when the soreness from the PRP injection subsided, he was able to resume his regular work, which can be very physically demanding, especially during harvest. “After my PRP treatment, I had only a dull pain or soreness for a few more weeks and then the pain was gone! I was back to my normal activities at work and at home.”

Margarito says he wouldn’t hesitate to undergo regenerative treatments if he is ever injured again. “Now I feel great. Even Dr. Bodor’s fellow that was exercising next to me at the gym was impressed with what I could do. I can do everything I did before my injury.”


1 According to an article published by Coombs et al in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) in 2013, patients who underwent a needling procedure with cortisone and lidocaine for tennis elbow, had an 83% chance of not having pain a year later, compared to 96% who had it with lidocaine only. According to an article by Mishra et al in the American Journal of Sport Medicine, for patients with chronic tennis elbow who had failed all other treatments and were candidates for surgery, 88% of them resolved other symptoms following a needling procedure with PRP versus 60% with lidocaine only.