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Cycling: Jakobsen to undergo surgeries to rebuild jaw

FILE PHOTO: A rescue helicopter is seen on the site where Dutch cyclists Fabio Jakobsen and Dylan Groenewegen crashed, while at the finish line on stage one of the Tour de Pologne in Katowice, Poland August 5, 2020. Grzegorz Celejewski/Agencja Gazeta/via REUTERS

(Reuters) - Dutch rider Fabio Jakobsen has said he will undergo reconstructive surgery next week to fix his jaw two months after a horrific crash at the Tour of Poland.

The Deceuninck-Quick Step team member was put in a medically induced coma after a collision with compatriot Dylan Groenewegen as they sprinted to the finish on the first stage of the race.

The 24-year-old, who was pitched into barriers and crashed into a race official, was operated on for five hours after the accident.

“First of all, I had to recover from my brain contusion and other bruises/injuries for a long time,” Jakobsen said on Twitter. “The wounds/scars on my face are healing up well.

“On Oct. 8, I will undergo a second surgery to reconstruct my face/mouth ... The surgery involves placing bone, taken from my pelvic crest, in my upper and lower jaw, because a lot of bone is missing there.

“This bone will have to heal for several months. After that, another surgery will take place to put implants in my jaw so that I can get new teeth, as I lost them during my crash.”

Jakobsen had previously said he feared for his life and that his time in intensive care was a “difficult, dark period”.

After Jakobsen’s crash, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) said it would study all crashes that occur in the 2021 international calendar and take steps to improve rider safety.

Reporting by Arvind Sriram in Bengaluru; Editing by Robert Birsel

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