After crashing in downhill training in Lake Louise, Finnish skier Andreas Romar returned to Europe for further evaluation, forcing him to skip the Beaver Creek races. The Finnish Ski Association announced that due to a heel injury, Romar will be forced to stay off skis for an additional three weeks, counting him out for the January races in Wengen and Kitzbuehel. He now aims to return to racing in Garmisch-Partenkirchen.
Even though there has been no new injury for Romar, the heel injury which was originally diagnosed as a bone bruise proved to be a fracture according to the latest evaluations.
“An internal bone fracture is difficult to see because it does not always present itself the same way in the MRI. Most likely, in the first images the fracture was not seen as the impact caused some swelling of the bone. As the swelling decreased, the fracture lines stood out better,” orthopedic surgeon Eero Hyvärinen told reporters.
The rehabilitation does not change with this new information, and Romar will be able to go back to training once the situation returns to normal and there is no longer pain.
“The treatment is the same in both cases. Nothing would have changed in the rehabilitation process should the fracture been immediately diagnosed after the incident. The only thing which changed is the knowledge that the healing process for this type of injury takes about six weeks,” Hyvärinen added.
Knowing the full extent of the injury was in some way a relief for Romar, but being sidelined for even a few weeks of time during an Olympic year is hard for any athlete.
“Now at least we know exactly what is broken,” Romar said. “This situation was not improving and the heel has been sore for a long time. Eight months of work were put into this season and my expectations and goals are high, so of course the situation is bothering me. Speed racers in the World Cup must be able to be 110 percent efficient so for now it’s best to get this foot back in shape and focus on the races where I’ll be able to compete again.”
There was tougher news for Germany’s Veronique Hronek who crashed in Sunday’s (Dec. 22) giant slalom race in Val d’Isere and suffered a torn ACL in the left knee. The 22-year-old underwent surgery the following day in Munich. German team doctor and knee specialist Dr. Ernst-Otto Muench led the one-hour surgery in the left knee. During the operation, the torn ligament was replaced by a piece of the hamstring.
“The operation was positive and free of complications,” said Dr. Muench. “Veronique Hronek is expected to remain a few days in the hospital before she can start with the first rehabilitation. Provided a favorable healing process, Veronique can start with the snow training again in about six months. ”
“The Olympic Games, I have to forget, unfortunately,” said Hronek. “Now I look forward and prepare myself for the rehabilitation. My goal is to be top fit in the World Cup again for winter 2015.”
France’s Marie Marchand-Arvier took a nasty tumble in the downhill race at Val d’Isere on Saturday (Dec. 21), but likely escaped without serious injury. Doctors diagnosed a separated shoulder and bruised muscle after the crash. Marchand-Arvier will undergo a phase of rehabilitation before resuming competition in January.
Releases courtesy of FIS, French Ski Federation, and Deutscher Skiverband