PALM BEACH COUNTY, Florida, November 27. FOUR-time Olympian and American record holder Dara Torres underwent successful surgery on Wednesday, Nov. 21 to remove a bone spur responsible for a partial rotator cuff tear in her right shoulder. This is the second shoulder surgery for Torres, 40, who is expected to make a full recovery, according to a release sent out by her agents last night.
Torres demonstrated remarkable ability to perform under such adversity as she swam to a pair of short course meter American records with the injury while at the Berlin stop of the FINA World Cup.
Full text of the rest of the release is as follows:
Dr. Joseph Chalal of Performance Orthopedics of the Palm Beaches performed the procedure in which he successfully removed the bone spur. Though recovery will take some time, Torres is expected to return to the pool in two to three weeks and will begin a gradual workout in the water.
Prior to the procedure, Torres was forced to decrease her training regimen because of the severe shoulder discomfort. Physical therapy and activity modification were not enough to eliminate the pain, so with eight months until Olympic Trials and nine months until the Beijing Olympics, Torres, her coach Michael Lohberg, and Dr. Chalal collectively decided to proceed with the surgery.
"Dara underwent an uneventful right shoulder arthroscopy which should hopefully allow her to maximize her future performance and achieve her goals in next summer's Olympics," said Dr. Chalal.
After four Olympics and more than 20 years of elite competition, natural wear and tear to a swimmer's body is to be expected. With a rigorous training regimen and relentless work ethic, Speedo-sponsored Torres has remained injury-free for the majority of her career. Wednesday's procedure was a necessary step in Torres' efforts to continue her long and accomplished swim career.
Torres' first shoulder surgery, which took place after she finished her collegiate eligibility, was necessary to repair a torn labrum in her left shoulder.