Steelers LB undergoes spinal stabilization surgery

Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier is carted off with a spinal injury

After Monday night's game, the Steelers released a statement saying linebacker Ryan Shazier "will not require surgery at this time, and he continues to improve".

"Just got off phone w neurologist Dr Anthony Alessi, who consults w NFLPA, asked him what he makes of Shazier's spinal stabilization surgery", Steele wrote.

Shazier left Paul Brown Stadium on a stretcher less than four minutes into his team's 23-20 victory over Cincinnati following a tackle that left the 25-year-old writhing on the turf, his legs motionless. He was brought back to Pittsburgh Wednesday afternoon after spending two nights at UC Medical Center in Cincinnati.

Spinal stabilization surgery can take a variety of forms, but typically involves "instrumentation" (titanium or stainless steel screws, plates, etc.) and/or bone graft to stabilize the spine to treat spinal cord problems, including those caused by trauma, as likely is Shazier's case.

Shazier's head slammed into the thigh of Bengals wide receiver Josh Malone early in the first quarter.

Shazier spoke to multiple teammates and has remained upbeat about the process. Shazier himself used Twitter to thank fans for their support.

The Pro Bowl linebacker leads the Steelers in tackles and has three interceptions.

Coach Mike Tomlin, who visited Shazier in the hospital Monday night, recounted the incident that injured the linebacker. "When we need a big play, he's one of the guys we look to". That's life. We realize and understand he is in really good hands and getting expert medical care.



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