(Philadelphia, PA, October 11) - Flyers Athletic/Trainer and Strength and Conditioning Coach Jim McCrossin on Wednesday updated the condition of defenseman Mike Rathje, who has been out of the lineup with back problems. According to McCrossin, Rathje could be back on the ice as early as late next week.
Q: What is the latest update on Mike Rathje? McCrossin: "Mike was evaluated by Dr. Daniel Feinberg at Pennsylvania Hospital today. He was diagnosed with a tentative diagnosis of piriformis syndrome. It is a nerve within the piriformus muscle. Dr. Feinberg feels that the nerve might be actually entrapped in this muscle. We will have to conduct another EMG either tomorrow or Friday to pinpoint the exact location of where the nerve is entrapped. That will take it from a tentative diagnosis to a confirmed diagnosis. If it does become a confirmed diagnosis then Mike will have to go in and have an injection to hopefully help release this entrapment. What are we looking at in terms of time? In a best case scenario we are hoping Mike can be back on the ice late next week."
Q: Is this something totally different from what we thought was something wrong with a herniated L-5 disk in his back? McCrossin: "Yes, this is something totally different. This is actually in the piriformus muscle. This is a good thing. We are hoping that the injection will cure it. If that's the case and the injection will take care of this, surgery would not be needed at this time."