The University of Houston Athletics Department sent out an update on Cougar cornerback D.J. Hayden which stated that he is currently alert and in stable yet critical condition in Memorial Hermann ICU unit.
Hayden sustained an injury from a collision in practice on Tuesdasy and was transported by ambulance from the UH football practice facility to Memorial Hermann Hospital.
Walter Lowe, M.D., University of Houston Head Team Physician, confirmed Thursday that Hayden required immediate surgery for a tear of the inferior vena cava, the large vein that carries blood from the lower half of the body back to the heart. Dr. Lowe said the injury was very serious and life-threatening, and he commended the coordinated response from the University of Houston Athletics Training Staff, EMS paramedics and the trauma staff at Memorial Hermann.
Statement from Walter Lowe, M.D., University of Houston Head Team Physician:
"This injury has never been seen or reported in association with a football injury and is more associated with high speed motor vehicle injuries. The type of injury D.J. had is 95 percent fatal in the field and we are all very thankful for the coordinate response from the University of Houston trainers, EMS paramedics, the trauma team at Memorial Hermann and operating surgeon Dr. John Holcomb."
Statement from Tony Levine, University of Houston Head Football Coach:
"D.J. is a tremendous young man and has been a great asset to our program, both on and off the field. I ask that everyone continue to keep D.J. and his family in their thoughts and prayers. We are very fortunate to have some of the nation's top physicians and medical facilities just minutes away from our campus and I would like to extend our appreciation for their efforts on Tuesday evening. We thank you for respecting the privacy of D.J. and his family at this time. We look forward to supporting D.J. on his road to recovery."
Members of the Cougar football team have visited Hayden in the hospital and said he looked good. Teammates, coaches and fans continue to show support on Twitter under the hashtag #PrayforDJ.
The University of Houston Athletics Department will release further updates on Hayden as they become available.