Ian Thorpe has contracted two serious infections following an operation on his shoulder, though his agent denies reports his life could be at risk.
The 31-year-old, five-time Olympic gold medalist had the reconstruction surgery in Switzerland where he lives, and has since been flown home. The ABC says he’s receiving treatment at a Sydney intensive care ward.
His agent James Erskine confirmed Thorpe has contracted the infection and would never swim again competitively, though denied reports his client could lose the use of one arm, or that his life was at risk.
“It’s serious but it’s not life-threatening,” Erskine told the ABC. “He’s contracted two forms of bugs in hospital.”
The ABC report says the infections are similar to the potentially deadly Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus superbug found in some hospitals in Europe recently.
“He’s undergone two or three operations over the last two months so … I mean bad luck.
“He’s quite sick but that’s the situation.”
Thorpe was admitted to a rehabilitation program earlier this year after he was found disorientated near his parent’s home in southern Sydney, after taking a combination of painkillers and antidepressants for a shoulder injury. He made a lacklustre comeback attempt at the 2012 Olympics.
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