Athletes Who Didn’t Let a Herniated Disc Kill Their Careers

woman massaging her neck

A herniated disc is painful. It occurs when the disc that works as a buffer between every bone that makes up your spine gets dislodged. When your bones pressing against the nerves in your spinal column, it produces pain. Some people in East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania have severe herniated discs that they would need surgery or ozone therapy for joints. Others have less troubling herniated discs that they need only therapy and painkillers.

There are athletes who also suffered from herniated discs or other back problems that could have meant an end to their careers. But despite the odds, these athletes powered through, recovered from their injuries, and went on to become some of the most revered sports personalities on the planet.

Tony Romo

He is a retired quarterback who played for the Dallas Cowboys from 2003 to 2016. In 2013, against the Washington Redskins, Romo led his teammates to a winning touchdown, which scored them a 24-23 victory after trailing in the fourth quarter. But behind the scenes, the quarterback was suffering from a herniated disc, which he had to undergo surgery for after the game.

According to Romo, the pain originated from his leg, which could have been the result of a collision between him and another player from the Washington Redskins. He was already suffering from the pain even before that final game against the Redskins, but he chose to work through the pain until the end of the season.

After the game, he underwent microdiscectomy and recovered afterwards. He went back to playing for the Cowboys until early 2017, when he announced his retirement from the sport after his last game against the Philadelphia Eagles.

Dwight Howard

having a check up

He is an NBA player who currently plays for the Washington Wizards, but in 2012 when he was still playing for the Orlando Magic, a herniated disc almost cut his career short.

He was scheduled to play for the U.S. basketball team in London for the 2012 Olympics, but his herniated disc kept him from playing. He tried non-surgical methods first, but when they failed to cure his injury, he underwent a minimally invasive spine surgery. He recovered soon after, and he went on to cement his status as one of the most revered players in NBA.

Andy Murray

Britain’s hero, he broke the Wimbledon curse when he won the tournament in 2013 after a 77-year drought. Fred Perry won the Wimbledon singles title in 1936. Since then, it was only Murray who was able to win that title multiple times (Murray won in Wimbledon again in 2016).

Murray suffered from a herniated disc, and he had to undergo surgery to fix his L4/L5 disc herniation. The injury was causing pressure on his sciatic nerve, which then caused him pain. He underwent surgery in 2013, but despite this setback, he recovered soon. He even won the Wimbledon singles title once more in 2016, further proving that anyone can come back from a herniated disc and be even better and stronger.

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