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Austrian ski jumper partially paralyzed after crash

Ski Jumping

Poland’s Maciej Kot soars through the air during his qualification jump at the third stage of the 64th four hills ski jumping tournament in Innsbruck, Austria, Saturday, Jan. 2, 2016. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)


GRAZ, Austria (AP) -- Doctors say Austrian ski jumper Lukas Mueller has been left partially paralyzed after crashing in practice for the sky flying world championship.

Mueller sustained an “incomplete paraplegia” and has some sensitivity in his legs, according to chief surgeon Franz-Josef Seibert of the Graz hospital, where Mueller had emergency surgery on his spine on Wednesday.

Doctors operated to stabilize his spine after a fracture between the sixth and seventh vertebrae, but Mueller is unable to move his legs. He is able to breathe on his own.

Seibert and other doctors say it would be “not serious” to predict if and when Mueller could walk again.

Hospital director Gernot Brunner says it could take a year before doctors would have a better idea about the scope of the injury and Mueller’s prognosis.

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