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Arizona’s Dellucci Has Surgery

July 28, 1999

PHOENIX (AP) _ Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder David Dellucci underwent surgery Tuesday to repair a damaged bone in his left wrist, a condition that threatens his career.

``Everything went extremely well,″ said Dr. Don Sheridan, who performed the 2 1/2-hour operation. ``The technical aspects of the operation couldn’t have gone better.″

Sheridan removed 3 to 4 millimeters of the radius bone in Dellucci’s left forearm. He also leveled the wrist joint to even out the pressure all along his wrist.

Dellucci had a condition known as Kienbock’s disease. Because the radius bone was longer than the ulna bone in his forearm, there was undue pressure on one of the small dice-sized bones in his wrist called the lunate.

With each blow to the wrist, Dellucci was losing more circulation in his hand. Without the surgery, the bone in his hand would have disintegrated and his career certainly would be over, Sheridan said. With the surgery, Sheridan has predicted about a 70 percent chance that Dellucci will be able to play professional baseball again.

In about two weeks, the wrist will be put in a cast that will remain in place for about two months. Dellucci hopes to be ready to participate in spring training.

Dellucci’s parents, grandmother and some close friends were at the hospital when the surgery was performed.