Abby Dahlkemper Shares Update on Back Injury: ‘Wanted to Celebrate a Small Win’

The San Diego Wave FC star underwent surgery in November.
Abby Dahlkemper.

Abby Dahlkemper.

NWSL player Abby Dahlkemper finally is sharing a much-awaited and positive update on her back injury and surgery. The 29-year-old took to TikTok to give fans and followers some insight.

“I’m just hopping on here to give the people a little back update. So I’m two-and-a-half months post-op on my back. I had a TLIF and L5 S1 fusion,” she explained of her surgery last November. “Basically, I was having just like really bad sciatic nerve pain on my left leg all last year. And it turns out that I had a cyst and bone fragments hitting my nerve root, so it was very much needed.”

The defender helped lead the USWNT to its fourth World Cup championship in 2019 and logged the most minutes of any U.S. player during the tournament in France.

Dahlkemper publicly announced she would be taking a break from soccer due to a back injury after withdrawing from the USWNT SheBelieves Cup in February 2022. The San Diego Wave star then played a few games in May before fracturing her ribs.

Last October, Dahlkemper announced on Instagram that she had decided to undergo surgery.

“I saw my surgeon today for a quick checkup and I got a CT scan and he was like in awe, in shock because my bone is fusing already and it’s like so early to fuse and so it just made me so excited and he was pumped for me,” she continued in the recent TikTok. “I’m so excited. I just really can’t wait to like tackle rehab hard, which I have been but [I’m] just biking and doing the underwater treadmill right now. I’m excited to get real cardio in and start lifting and stuff hopefully in the near future. Just wanted to celebrate kind of a small little win with everyone and I have my healing crystals on so that is definitely helping me my spirits.”

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Ananya Panchal


Ananya Panchal is a NYC-based Lifestyle & Trending News writer at SI Swimsuit. Before joining the Swim team, the Boston University Alum worked for culture & entertainment beats at Bustle, The San Francisco Chronicle and the TODAY Show. When Ananya is not writing or doom-scrolling on social media, she can be found playing sudoku, rewatching One Tree Hill or trying new restaurants. She's also a coffee and chocolate (separately) enthusiast.