Dwight Howard, a basketball player for the Orlando Magic, will be recovering in L.A. for the next three weeks after undergoing spine surgery in Marina del Rey, his doctor said in a statement on Tuesday.
Dr. Robert Watkins, Sr. operated Howard last Friday to repair a herniated disk in his lower back, and he was released from the Marina del Rey hospital the following day.
“I have advised Dwight not to travel and to undergo rehabilitation treatment for the next three weeks in Los Angeles,” Watkins said in a statement. “He has agreed with my recommendation. While it is anticipated that Dwight will not be able to participate in the Olympics, I am very optimistic that he will be able to play next season.”
Watkins specializes in innovative spine surgeries and sports related injuries. He has treated other athletes such as Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, New York Giants cornerback Will Peterson and Cowboys receiver Michael Irvin.
He uses minimally invasive surgery, which involves using a microscope through a special retractor to access the spine to reduce muscle damage.
Howard has begun a walking program, and he will be reexamined this week.