Steven Stamkos will likely have rib removed in blood clot surgery

Steven Stamkos will likely have rib removed in blood clot surgery

Tampa Bay Lightning star Steven Stamkos could be out of action up to three months with a blood clot near his right collarbone, for which he’s having surgery on Monday.

To put it technically, he has Vascular Thoracic Outlet Syndrome; and more specifically, he has Effort Thrombosis.

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According to Erik Erlendsson of the Tampa Tribune, it’s the same diagnosis as Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy, who had surgery on Sept. 3, 2015 and was back on the ice by Oct. 28.

Like Vasilevskiy, it appears that Stamkos will have a rib removed as part of the treatment.

From Frank Seravalli of TSN:

Surgeons will likely remove Steven Stamkos’ top rib on his right side today to alleviate pressure that caused a blood clot to form near his collarbone. “It isn’t a rib like you’d think of, it is much smaller, more like the size of an index finger,” explained Dr. Thomas Forbes, vascular surgeon at Toronto’s Peter Munk Cardiac Centre.

Forbes said that rib, which is bonded by the collarbone, constricts blood flow to the vein and can cause clotting with trauma or repetitive motion, such as raising your arms above your head.

Don’t worry, he’s got 23 of them left.

No word if removing this rib will assist him in belly-dancing like it allegedly did for Shakira. Or, you know, do other flexible things.

This leads us to two basic questions about Stamkos: When will he return for the Lightning, and will this ailment affect the pending free agent going forward?

As we saw with Vasilevskiy, the conservative estimate is around two months, which would put the Lightning around the conference final, if not the Stanley Cup Final.

Then again, Stamkos has already proven to have Wolverine-like healing abilities, bub.

As for the rest of his career doctors seem to agree that this could be a one-time incident after the surgery.

“While his risk of having another clot is higher than in the general population, it’s still very low,” said Dr. Graham Roche-Nagle, a vascular surgeon at the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre in Toronto.


Greg Wyshynski is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Contact him at or find him on Twitter. His book, TAKE YOUR EYE OFF THE PUCK, is available on Amazon and wherever books are sold.