Four-time World Champion Shirley Muldowney has been hospitalized in Michigan due to an infected left ankle. The ankle, which was surgically fused following her devastating 1984 crash, has been strained due to two knee replacement operations, both of which also ultimately resulted from that earlier accident. The latest of these, on her right knee, apparently placed additional pressures on her left leg, and may have been the cause of the infection. Muldowney will spend at least the next three days at Oakwood Hospital in Dearborn, where she’s been treated with a veritable cocktail of antibiotics, which are being administered via an intravenous drip.
Ms. Muldowney first began experiencing ankle pain two weeks ago, but tried to tough it out by ignoring the discomfort, but a visit to her doctor last Monday indicated the infection had set in. By the time the weekend rolled around and her condition hadn’t improved, her doctors recommended hospitalization so they could more directly attack the problem. She is expected to make a complete recovery.
Muldowney’s movements have been somewhat curtailed in recent years, which has limited her ability to visit with her fellow women drivers during the NHRA POWERade Series races, a situation she deeply regrets. But, as is her wont, she’s been reluctant to bemoan her situation, so has chosen to remain silent about her troubles.
Muldowney is slated to appear at the Rock ‘Til You Drop Car Show in Ft. Meyers, FL on December 3rd, and has already informed promoter Tony Allen of her situation. She told Torco’s Competitionplus.com that “If I can walk into the plane to get to Florida, I’m going, but at this point I’ll just have to wait and see.”
We’ll have updates as they occur.