NASCAR

RACING ONE: Todd Bodine recovering from surgery

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MOORESVILLE, N.C.

has successfully undergone endothscopic back surgery to repair a ruptured (L5S1) disc that kept him from competing in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Dr. Tim Adamson performed the 45-minute outpatient procedure at the Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, N.C. Bodine is expected to recover in six to eight weeks. Bodine has dealt with infrequent disc discomfort throughout the 2002 season and was prepared to seek treatment at the end of this year's NASCAR calendar. However, recent on-track incidences, such as a crash at the Winston Cup race at North Carolina Speedway, and an accident during Busch Series practice at Homestead-Miami Speedway are believed to have caused the disc to rupture requiring today's surgery. "I am glad to be on the mend, "said Bodine at his home in Davidson, N.C. "I visited Dr. Jerry Petty and Dr. Tim Adamson of Carolina NeuroSurgery and Spine the Monday after returning from Homestead. It was discovered at that time my bulged disc had ruptured. We decided right there to schedule surgery as soon as possible." At the end of the 2001 NASCAR season, Dr. Adamson performed a similar surgery on . Bodine is expected to make a full recovery in time for the 2003 season-opening races in Daytona. "I am real pleased at how well the surgery went," said Dr. Adamson. "If all goes as anticipated, we are looking for Todd will be able to get behind the wheel of a stock car by the middle of January and be 100% for Speedweeks in February 2003." In the meantime, the 38-year-old driver has been told to relax and is only being allowed to stand up or lay down. When cleared, a physical therapy regimen is planned at the supervision of Dr. Adamson. "The best case scenario is to start Todd on a physical therapy program in two weeks after the surgery site has scarred over that will include stretching and strengthening exercises," added Dr. Adamson. Todd and his wife, Lynn credit Denise Meeks, the Busch Series NASCAR Medical Liaison for her help in coordinating Monday's medical examination after their return from Miami. "Throughout the entire season, in both the NASCAR Busch and Winston Cup Series, we have had the pleasure of dealing with the NASCAR medical liaisons in the at-track care centers. They have made medical situations so much less trying and stressful for the competitors and our families. We cannot thank them enough for being there for us as well as NASCAR for putting them in place. It is a program that is greatly appreciated," added Bodine.

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