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Luol Deng says he lost 15 pounds, still feels weak

May 10, 2013, 8:49 AM EDT

Officially, Luol Deng is listed as day-to-day by Tom Thibodeau and the Chicago Bulls. He was back at the Bulls practice facility on Thursday.

But he said he has lost 15 pounds though this medical ordeal — which was much worse than the flu that was originally announced — and he didn’t look like a guy who could play, or contribute a whole lot if he did.

His entire interview is above, but here is the money quote via Aggrey Sam of

“I tried to shoot a little bit and I struggled. I couldn’t do it. We’ll see,” he said after the Bulls’ practice Thursday afternoon at the Berto Center. “I want to play, but I don’t know what I can do. I haven’t done anything. It really sucks.

“It’s really my first day out of the house and out of the hospital. I haven’t really left my bed much or done much,” the NBA’s back-to-back minutes-per-game leader added. “I’m weak and I have headaches; when I’m moving around a lot, my headache increases. That’s really the main thing.”

Deng’s ordeal was not a lot of fun.

“It all started with I wasn’t feeling well. I guess I had the flu. But my symptoms were really bad when I went to the hospital. They wanted to make sure I didn’t have meningitis, which I’m thankful for. They wanted to make sure. I did the spinal tap and after that, I just didn’t respond well. I started having severe headaches, was struggling to walk. I started feeling really weak. I started throwing up, constant diarrhea. I couldn’t control my body really. Because of that, I lost a lot of weight. And still just trying to get back, just trying to get right. I still don’t feel right,” he explained.

The other key injury to the Bulls during these playoffs was to Kirk Hinrich, who had an MRI to look at his injured calf and Thibodeau didn’t sound optimistic he would be back for Game 3 Friday night against the Heat.

  1. hwatt - May 10, 2013 at 9:58 AM

    waitaminute, he went to the hospital and the doctors decided to go into his spine ‘just to make sure’?!?! wow, this is why i’m very weary of hospitals. Reminds me of the time my infant had a high fever, and the doctors were like ‘well let’s run a catheter up her &%&% just to make sure she doesn’t have a urinary tract infection’. WTF?!?! we just left. and the baby turned out fine. Deng should have given it 24 more hours.

    • wearewhowethoughtwewere - May 10, 2013 at 10:30 AM

      Yes be weary of hospitals, because they run tests to rule out causes of illnesses.

      They ran a spinal tap to rule out spinal meningitis. Which if not treated within 24-48 hours of being symptomatic, is fatal.

      Feel sorry for your baby. Always a good rule of thumb of an infant running a high fever to do nothing.

      • hwatt - May 10, 2013 at 11:45 AM

        works for us! have fun paying your letting doctors play with your body. If you seriously think everything doctors suggest is best for YOU, and not their liability, then we’ll talk more after you wake up

    • davidly - May 10, 2013 at 10:51 AM

    • rawgator06 - May 10, 2013 at 12:06 PM

      You were lucky and nothing happened to your poor baby due to your neglect. Don’t try to give other people terrible and potentially fatal advice. There is a reason that medical school is so rigorous, why they force doctors to do residencies, and, most importantly, why so much money goes into medical research.

      • hwatt - May 10, 2013 at 12:25 PM

        well you hit the nail on the head, it’s all about money, and job security. think before you post next time.

    • lmoneyfresh - May 10, 2013 at 12:27 PM

      Man, how dare they try to run tests for a potentially serious issue?!? I’m sure they immediately decided on an uncomfortable procedure just to see how far they could push you. You really showed them!

    • denverhoopdreams - May 10, 2013 at 7:20 PM

      I agree with everyone else here. Did you see the symptoms he was sick with? They definitely point to possibilities of meningitis, and usually if they get to the point of testing meningitis they’ve already ruled out enough other issues.

      Living in Colorado I know several people who went to CU Boulder during the epidemic they had with it, and many friends of my friends got it and a few lost their lives, it is no joke and if they see the symptoms, that spinal tap can be a matter of life or death.

      Let me guess, you’re also one of those conspiracy theorists who thinks all vaccinations are bad for you?

      I’m glad your kid turned out okay, but I hope they don’t get indoctrinated by you to the point they think doctors don’t know what they’re doing.

  2. jjthesportsguy - May 10, 2013 at 10:49 AM

    You’re not very familiar with spinal taps, are you?

  3. earpaniac - May 10, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    I don’t mean this in a mean way, but he looks like he’s dying. I know he’s not, he just looks that bad. I’d be surprised if he plays this series.

  4. yousuxxors - May 10, 2013 at 10:53 AM

    spinal taps are no joke. idk why they wouldn’t wait to do one. it should be the last resort.

    • eventhorizon04 - May 10, 2013 at 11:24 AM

      …As mentioned in a comment above, in suspected cases of meningitis, you have to perform the spinal tap in order to determine if he has meningitis, and if so, what’s the cause of the meningitis (viral, bacterial, or fungal infection), and begin treatment based on that information within hours of someone exhibiting symptoms. Otherwise, meningitis can be fatal within 48 hours.

      Deng probably didn’t immediately go to the hospital after feeling ill, so let’s say he went around a day after he began feeling sick. That meant doctors had under 24 hours to diagnose and begin treating his suspected meningitis. In other words, that’s not a situation where doctors can sit back and wait a couple of days…

  5. ProBasketballPundit - May 10, 2013 at 11:01 AM

    It does seem odd that they did a spinal tap when the Bulls had several players suffering from the flu simultaneously. It seems likely that there was an airborne pathogen in the locker room… not that I know enough about it to comment. So… get well soon, Deng.

    • Kurt Helin - May 10, 2013 at 1:03 PM

      For whatever reason, the doctors had concerns about meningitis. I’m not remotely medically trained enough to know if that was the right call, but teams get players top flight medical care.

  6. supremekingz - May 10, 2013 at 11:23 AM

    Basketball should be the last thing on his mind. There are things far more important than a game. Take care of yourself. Stay alive, get well and get better for yourself and your family. Forget about basketball and coming back this series. Just get back to 100%

    • gmsingh - May 10, 2013 at 4:00 PM

      Yes, in his condition basketball should be the last thing on his mind. In D. Rose’s condition basketball should be the first thing on his mind.

  7. nawlinsmitty - May 10, 2013 at 12:06 PM

    hwatt…….ever thought about seeking help for that little paranoia problem?

  8. themagicfanguy - May 10, 2013 at 12:15 PM

    @hwatt Have fun when your baby gets taken away because it contracted a disease that you didn’t feel like getting it tested for.
    You think that doctors are eager to get into someone’s spine? With the high amount of malpractice lawsuits out there? You’re an idiot.

  9. Mr. Wright 212 - May 10, 2013 at 1:44 PM

    Heat goons sent to the hospital knowing that he would be vital to this series, took him out.

    • chitownmatt - May 10, 2013 at 3:58 PM

      More likely one of Jay-Z’s less reputable “associates” or the Russian mafia is behind this one. lol.

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