Plater hit by new injury woe

Steve Plater's hopes of a speedy recovery from injury have suffered a set-back after further X-Rays revealed a break in his vertebrae.

National Superstock title contender Plater broke his arm in a high-speed accident during the North West 200 earlier this month, an accident that immediately ruled him out of the Isle of Man TT where he was tipped for success.

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However, after experiencing recent pain in his shoulder and chest, a subsequent X-Ray and MRI scan has confirmed Plater is also suffering from a break in his neck between the sixth and seventh vertebrae.

Requiring an additional operation, Plater blamed his 'extraordinarily high' pain threshold for not identifying the injury sooner.

"I thought by now I'd be well on the road to recovery following the crash at the North West, so this is definitely a set-back," the reigning British Supersport champion said. "I know I wasn't feeling right though which is why I went back in to hospital for more tests last week and I'm now just relieved that we know what the problem is, but more so, that it can be fixed. Who'd have thought that having such a high pain threshold would be a negative thing!

"I know people can't understand how it's taken until now to discover the injury in my neck but it probably would have been quicker with someone who has a more 'normal' tolerance level of pain!

"The X-rays showed up clear as they aren't so detailed, but because of the neck and shoulder pain I was having when I returned home, the consultant in Lincolnshire ordered a scan of my head and neck to double check.

"The best way to describe the injury is imagine each vertebra is a train carriage and then there's the link arm in between - well it's the link bit which is broken quite badly. The very fortunate thing though is that the broken bits appear to have fallen away from my spinal cord, otherwise the picture could have been different.

"You're not meant to have an MRI scan for about six weeks after an operation if you've had any metal put in your body as it can move the metal, but given the situation that rule of thumb had to go out the window. But, it doesn't seem to have caused any issue with my arm.

"It's been explained to me that people that have this type of neck injury and operation usually return to totally normal life pretty quickly, so I'm hopeful that will be the case for me and I see no reason why it shouldn't be.

"With my arm, the swelling is beginning to go down and I've got more movement in my fingers now. It's all still pretty bruised but heading in the right direction so I'm hopeful more feeling will start to come back soon."