Tiger Woods had surgery on his lower back Wednesday to try and alleviate the pain that has plagued him for most of the 2017 season.
Woods announced on his website Thursday that he underwent lower right back fusion surgery at the Texas Back Institute.
“The surgery went well, and I’m optimistic this will relieve my back spasms and pain,” Woods said in his statement. “When healed, I look forward to getting back to a normal life, playing with my kids, competing in professional golf and living without the pain I have been battling so long.”
This is the fourth procedure Woods has had on his back since 2014. He missed more than a year following two procedures during the fall of 2015, but his comeback lasted just three events and seven total rounds before he exited the Dubai Desert Classic in February with back spasms.
Woods’ agent, Mark Steinberg, told ESPN’s Bob Harig that the procedure was “something dramatically different than he’s done in the past.”
While no timetable for Woods’ return was given, his website said typical recovery lasts around six months. If that holds true, Woods would miss all four major championships for the second consecutive year.
“The grueling pain he was having came when the nerve and disk were touching,” Steinberg told Harig. “There were times where he would be OK, he could swing, he could hit the ball and walk. There was nothing touching the nerve.
“(When the disc is touching the nerve), that’s when you go into these intense spasms that I don’t know how he was living with.”
Woods has played just 18 worldwide events since 2014, and he hasn’t been the same since the end of his five-win 2013 season.
Thumbnail photo via Rob Kinnan/USA TODAY Sports Images