Tiger Woods’ Injuries ‘Significant,’ Long Recovery Predicted
This story has been updated throughout February 24, 2021.
February 23, 2021 – PGA legend Tiger Woods faces a long recovery from surgery to fix broken leg bones and a broken ankle, orthopedics expert has said.
Woods, whose car pulled off a Los Angeles-area highway on Tuesday, sustained “significant” injuries to his right leg, foot and ankle, according to a statement released Tuesday by Chief Medical Officer Anish Mahajan, MD. and interim CEO of Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, where Woods underwent surgery.
Multiple open fractures affecting both the upper and lower parts of the tibia [shin bone] and fibula [calf bone] the bones were stabilized by inserting a rod into the tibia, “the statement read.” Additional injuries to the bones of the foot and ankle were stabilized with a combination of screws and pins. “In addition, there is had muscle and soft tissue trauma to his leg that required surgical release of the muscle blanket to relieve pressure from the swelling.
Scott D. Boden, MD, president of orthopedics at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, reviewed public information about Woods’ injuries and WebMD’s treatment.
“This is a serious injury to the leg,” says Boden. “Fragmentation means several fragments [of bone]and open means the skin has been penetrated, both suggesting a high energy injury. “
The need to relieve the coverage of the muscles, he says, means there was abnormally high swelling, and this can potentially affect nerves or blood vessels. “We don’t know about nerve damage yet, but I hope not.”
As for recovery, “physical therapy will probably be necessary as part of the rehabilitation plan. Depending on the details of his foot and ankle injuries, which were not provided, it could take anywhere from 6 months to 2 years. “
Even so, Boden says he expects Woods to be able to walk again. As for his ability to compete, “ it really depends on the details of the foot and ankle injuries and whether they affect the joint surfaces and cartilage. ”
Boden says he is optimistic, however. “Ultimately, if anyone can come back from this, Tiger can. I would never want to exclude Tiger from a comeback.”
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