Roethlisberger out with potentially life-threatening rib injury
By Alan Robinson
Published: Wednesday, November 14, 2012, 10:30 a.m.
Updated: Wednesday, November 14, 2012
One of Ben Roethlisberger’s first questions upon learning about his rare combination of injuries was asking how long it normally takes to recover.
His doctor’s answer? No idea because there is nothing normal about them.
Roethlisberger, whose steady playmaking is largely responsible for the Steelers’ 6-3 record, has a dislocated rib that could be life-threatening if he were to play, plus an upper-chest injury that is significant in itself.
“From what (the doctor) said, he’s trying to talk to experts because there’s no case study that’s had this exact same thing,” said Roethlisberger, who is being treated by Steelers orthopedist Jim Bradley, among others. “From what he told me, it was a 1998 rugby player or something (who had this). We’re just trying to talk to people and get an expectation because we don’t know.”
Roethlisberger was upbeat but a bit weary — he slept uneasily in a chair for only a few hours the previous two nights — while talking to reporters Wednesday about the injuries that will keep him out of one and possibly both Steelers-Ravens showdowns in the next three weeks.
Roethlisberger said he dislocated his top rib — the first rib — that protects the aorta, the largest artery in the body, while being driven to the turf Monday night by Chiefs linebackers Justin Houston and Tamba Hali. He immediately knew something was wrong, saying he heard “a crunch and a crack.”
If the rib had punctured the aorta, it could have been dangerous.
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