Cowboys' Bowen to undergo knee surgery - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Cowboys' Bowen to undergo knee surgery

By Ben Galvin 18/06/2008 04:56:54 PM Comments (0)

North Queensland's Matt Bowen will undergo a radical knee operation which involves implanting artificial cartilage being harvested in Western Australia.

Bowen has struggled to overcome a painful left knee injury after offseason surgery and another minor clean out recently and will now miss the rest of 2008 to undergo the career-saving surgery.

North Queensland doctor Kevin Arlett said the operation, expected to take place in Townsville in four weeks time, was "fairly new" and would involve at least six to nine months of rehabilitation.

The Cowboys took the step of harvesting cartilage from Bowen's knee in his last bout of surgery several weeks ago that was sent to Western Australia to grow in an artificial matrix.

The artificial cartilage will then be implanted into Bowen's knee - the same operation winger Ty Williams endured and recovered from in 2007.

"Matthew has damage to the articular cartilage in his left knee. The minor surgery has not assisted with this problem and we are planning to repair this area of damage," Arlett said.

"We have harvested some cartilage from his knee which is being grown on an artificial matrix and this will be used to repair the damage in a further surgical operation.

"Our experience with this operation is very limited, it is a fairly new operation.

"Ty Williams went through it and he has now got a fairly normal looking knee.

"He doesn't have any problems with it and we are hoping for the same result with Matty."

Arlett said the operation is "more than a reconstruction" but Bowen's age and fitness levels would boost his chances of a speedy recovery.

Although hopeful Bowen would return to the field for the start of the 2009 campaign Arlett could not guarantee the former representative star would begin the season.

"We will be looking at somewhere between six and nine months rehabilitation phase," he said.

"It depends on the individual but we hope Matthew's recovery would increase because of his age and fitness levels."

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