Serena Williams' pulmonary embolism: New details on the tennis star's condition
Williams hasn't played tennis since injuring her foot after winning the Wimbledon title in July and now it looks like she'll be spending even more time off the court than she'd anticipated. Though she had hoped to return to the sport by spring, she likely won't be able to play again until summer.
"This has been extremely hard, scary, and disappointing," Williams says in a new statement. "I know I will be OK, but am praying and hoping this will all be behind me soon. While I can't make any promises now on my return, I hope to be back by early summer. That said, my main goal is to make sure I get there safely."
It's possible that the embolism was a complication of the surgery on her foot, as clots are more likely to form in people who have had surgery. Embolisms often form in the leg and travel to the lung.
The WTA says, "We are very heartened to hear ... Serena is now recovering and on the road to full health and a possible return to professional tennis in early summer. Serena is a champion on and off the court, and we along with her millions of fans wish her a speedy recovery."
Williams' fellow tennis stars have tweeted their support. The #1 Tennis player in the world (Williams now stands at #11), Christine Wozniacki, posted "My thoughts are going out to her, hope she is ok!" Kim Clijsters, who stands at #2, wrote, "Just read about Serena!!!! Very scary, hope she is ok!fingers crossed."
Even Billie Jean King released a statement. "Serena is a champion and a fighter. I know she is the kind of person who faces challenges with complete optimism and guts and I don't think this situation will be any different for her."