A former PGA Tour professional has had one of his legs amputated as a result of a long-standing medical condition.
Casey Martin underwent the procedure on his right leg yesterday as a result of complications arising from Klippel–Trénaunay syndrome.
Speaking to Golf Digest, the 49-year-old’s brother, Cameron, said that the operation was a success.
“They were able to save as much of the bone above the knee as they had hoped,” he added. “This should give him a good shot at a prosthesis that will be effective.”
Klippel–Trénaunay syndrome is a condition that affects the development of blood vessels, soft tissues (such as skin and muscles), and bones.
In Martin’s case, the condition affected his right leg but he was still able to enjoy a successful career in golf.
A former college teammate of Tiger Woods, he was part of the Stanford University team that won the NCAA Championship in 1994. A year later, he turned professional and, by 2000, had worked his way onto the PGA Tour.
In 2001, he successfully sued the PGA Tour for the right to use a golf cart during competition under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
He made a total of 41 PGA tour appearances between 1998 and 2005, and a further two in 2012, earning just over $200,000 in the process.
Martin also played in the US Open on two occasions, finishing in a tie for 23rd on his debut at the Olympic Club in 1998. He qualified again in 2012 and, using his cart, played a practice round with Tiger but missed the cut.
In 2006, he was named head coach of the University of Oregon’s men’s golf team in his home town of Eugene.
Speaking to Golf Digest two weeks ago, Martin addressed his decision to go ahead with the amputation. “I always felt this would be my destiny,” he said. “So while it’s weird to be here now, about to become seriously disfigured, it’s not unexpected.”