During media availability in the Boston Red Sox clubhouse on Thursday, relief pitcher Bobby Jenks described his offseason back surgery that went woefully wrong and resulted in a spinal condition he called life-threatening.
Jenks underwent the initial surgery on Dec. 12, but described to reporters how he required follow-up surgery two and a half weeks later to correct what he called an "error" during the first procedure. (via WEEI)
"With the whole blood clot issue last year, I couldn't have the surgery until December," Jenks said. "All the way up until that point, I was basically doing nothing but cardio and trying to get myself as strong as possible going into the surgery. I had the surgery on the 12th of December. It didn't go that great. I had to have an emergency surgery on the 30th to correct what happened in the prior surgery. [Doctors] went in and had that fixed and [I have] been pretty much laid up the last two months.
"I don't know whose fault it was but there was an error done inside. When I went in [for consultation], we had talked about it. I had four bone spurs basically on my spine. We talked about having the top two out and the third one was started and not finished. Basically, there was a serrated edge that sliced me open in two different spots and I was leaking spinal fluid. It just pulled at the bottom of my incision and just kind of blew up on me which caused an infection to climb up that incision wound, so now I had an infection in my spine."
Jenks said the surgery was in the middle part of his back, in the thoracic region.
"It was a combination of everything that could've gone wrong, went wrong," Jenks said. "If I didn't have it done immediately, the infection could've gotten into my spinal fluid and up to my brain, and who knows what happens then. I could obviously not be here right now."
Jenks, who signed a two-year, $12 million deal prior to the start of the 2011 season, was placed on the 60-day disabled list and there is no timetable for when he'll begin throwing a baseball again.
The pitcher said he will let his legal representatives determine whether to pursue legal action.