American Ted Ligety and Norwegian Aksel Lund Svindal have announced that they will both undergo season-ending surgery in order to fix problems preventing them from skiing at their highest level. Ligety will receive a microdiscectomy in order to alleviate nerve pain in his left leg, and Svindal had his meniscus repaired Tuesday morning after several weeks of chronic knee pain.
Both superstars suffered season-ending injuries last year, with Svindal tearing his ACL in spectacular fashion at Kitzbuehel and Ligety doing the same while training giant slalom in Oberjoch, Germany, the following week.
After a frustrating start to the season, Ligety made the difficult decision to choose surgery after several attempts at non-invasive treatments were not effective. Although he will miss the remainder of this season and will not be able to defend his World Championship GS title in St. Moritz, look for Ligety to return for the start of 2017-18 Olympic season.
“Since Soelden, I have been dealing with severe nerve pain down my left leg that has not allowed me to ski at the level that I expect of myself,” Ligety explained on his Instagram. “I have seen many doctors and therapists, undergone an array of treatments and therapies to no effect.”
One last powder day with my wife before going under the knife. Since Soelden, I have been dealing with severe nerve pain down my left leg that has not allowed me to ski at the level that I expect of myself. I have seen many doctors and therapists, undergone an array of treatments and therapies to no effect. Unfortunately surgery (microdiscectomy) means my season is over and a chance to defend my GS title again at World Champs. This has been tough to accept especially after last season, but on the plus side hopefully this surgery will alleviate the back issues I have dealt with over the last few years. I will be back strong and fast again. Thanks for your support. #illbeback
Svindal had enjoyed a successful start to his season with three podiums in downhill and super-G before knee pain caused him to skip the races in Wengen, Switzerland, and doctors discovered the issue with his left meniscus. Svindal is expected to be off skis for six months following Tuesday’s surgery.
“Ever since the Val Gardena downhill, I’ve had a strange feeling in my knee,” Svindal shared on Instagram. “We did MRI scans and manual checkups, but couldn’t really determine 100 percent if something was wrong or not. After trying the training runs in Wengen, I made up my mind. Something’s not right, and we needed to figure out what.”
Here we go again… Ever since the Val Gardena downhill I’ve had a strange feeling in my knee. Something didn’t seem right. We did MRI scans and manual checkups, but couldn’t really determine 100% if something was wrong or not. After trying the training runs in Wengen I made up my mind. Something’s not right…,and we needed to figure out what. Together with the medical team I took the decision to do another surgery. What they found was a meniscus that was no longer attached to the bone. That’s no good in a downhill course… Meniscus not attached means no function, and no function means every landing on a jump and every hit to the knee is painful. The good part is that there are great chances of this being much better next winter. The bad part is that it’s back to the crutches and no more skiing this winter… Hmmmm. Sounds familiar.. But if it can be better next year, it’s more than worth it:)
A photo posted by Aksel Lund Svindal (@asvindal) on