Tiger Woods undergoes fourth back surgery since 2014

Tiger Woods has undergone back surgery to alleviate his persistent back spasms and pain, Woods announced on his website Thursday.

According to TigerWoods.com, Woods’ three previous surgeries left his “bottom lower-back disc severely narrowed, causing sciatica and severe back and leg pain.” This latest surgery removed a damaged disc in order to “relieve the pressure on the nerve and to give the nerve the best chance of healing.”

Woods, 41, returned to competition last December to mixed results after a 15-month hiatus from his three previous back surgeries. The back problems persisted, however, causing him to withdraw from the Dubai Desert Classic and Genesis Open, and not play the Masters this year.

“The surgery went well, and I’m optimistic this will relieve my back spasms and pain,” Woods said.

There was no timetable for Woods’ return, though the statement said patients usually take about six months to return to full activity after the procedure.

“When healed, I look forward to getting back to a normal life, playing with my kids, competing in professional golf and living without the pain I have been battling so long,” Woods continued.