Tiger Woods undergoes second back surgery, hopes to return early in 2016
On Friday, Tiger Woods announced on his website that he underwent "a successful back surgery." The microdiscectomy was performed on Wednesday in Park City, Utah, by neurosurgeon Dr. Charles Rich.
"With the upcoming offseason, the decision was made to remove a small disc fragment that was pinching his nerve," Dr. Rich said. "The microsurgery was a complete success, and he was discharged Thursday night."
Woods had previously committed to playing in the 2015-16 PGA Tour season opener, the Frys.com Open, in October. Woods hopes to return to action in early 2016, which means he'll also miss the America's Golf Cup in Mexico and his Hero World Challenge in December.
"I'd like to send my regrets to Frys and all those associated with the America's Golf Cup," Woods said. "Those were two events I was really looking forward to playing. I was ready to start the 2015-16 PGA TOUR season at Frys, and I was excited to join my good friend Matt [Kuchar] in Mexico City.
"I will be attending my foundation-hosted Hero World Challenge but won't be able to play. I appreciate everything that Hero does for the Tiger Woods Foundation, and I have a great personal relationship with Mr. Munjal [vice chairman and CEO of Hero MotoCorp]. I look forward to being there to support my event."
Woods is coming off a disappointing season in which he managed just one top 10 and failed to qualify for the FedEx Cup Playoffs. However, he had shown some signs of turning the corner at his last start, the Wyndham Championship, when he played his way into Sunday's final pairing before a triple-bogey on the 11th hole ended his chances of winning. On his site, it said Woods "felt occasional discomfort in the back and hips the last several weeks," including in Greensboro.
"This is certainly disappointing, but I'm a fighter," Woods said. "I've been told I can make a full recovery, and I have no doubt that I will."
Woods underwent his first microdiscectomy in March of 2014 when he was No. 1 in the Official World Golf Ranking and coming off a five-win campaign in 2013. He missed three months of action after the procedure and hasn't won since. The 14-time major champ's return won't be made any easier by the fact he'll turn 40 in December.
"I appreciate the fans' concern and support," Woods said on Friday. "This is unfortunate, but these things happen. I've been injured before and played again. It won't be any different this time."