Michelle Wie has announced she’s taking a leave of absence from golf as she tries to resolve a lingering hand injury once and for all.
The former US Women’s Open champion made the announcement on social media as she withdrew from this week’s Los Angeles Open.
“Had an encouraging visit with my doctor, however, we both think it’s in my best interest to take some time away to allow my body to heal properly and get stronger,” wrote Wie.
“Health is my top priority right now and hopefully I can get back to being pain free real soon. Thank you everyone for staying patient with me. I appreciate y’all.”
The news casts major doubt over the 29-year-old’s involvement in this year’s Solheim Cup at Gleneagles. Wie is currently 18th in American qualifying for the match.
Wie has been plagued by an injury to her right hand for some time and underwent surgery in October to repair an avulsion fracture, bone spurs and nerve entrapment.
She tied for 23rd on her return at the Honda LPGA Thailand in February but subsequently withdrew from the HSBC Women’s World Championship and missed the cut in the ANA Inspiration and last week’s LOTTE Championship.
Speaking to the Golf Channel, her coach David Leadbetter laid bare the full extent of his concern for her.
“She’s more than just a student to me,” he said. “She’s almost like a daughter, I’ve known her so long. You hate to see this. It’s tough to watch.
“This is pretty serious. Your hands are everything, and you don’t want this to become career ending.”