Gord Nadeau is a physiotherapist who will be helping us out on our golf and hockey coverage, dealing with the medical issues that arise within each sport. This is his take on Tiger's injury.
After an impressive display at the U.S. Open, Tiger Woods announced that he will undergo season-ending ACL surgery on his left knee. To go along with the ACL tear that occurred 10 months ago, he developed two stress fracture sites on his tibia prior to the U.S. Open. The usual timeframe for an athlete to return to sport from a stress fracture is 8-12 weeks. Since the tibia is one of the bones that are drilled into to accommodate the ACL repair, this could lengthen the recovery time if the location of the stress fractures are near the ACL fixation site. If we see Tiger have a later surgery date, say in six weeks, it may be to allow the stress fracture to resolve before having the ACL repair. The typical recovery period for an ACL repair is six-to-nine months. Watch for the surgery date and plan appropriately. It is reasonable to think he could return prior to the Masters in April 2009. The ACL repair should make Tiger’s knee more stable and less painful for him than during the current season. With his past knee history (three surgeries in the past five years), it wouldn’t be surprising if he needs to take some rest intervals during the 2009 season to manage any irritation the knee may face.
Posted by Jeff Erickson at 6/24/2008 7:07:00 AM