After a nine-month hiatus, Brandt Snedeker has his sights set on returning to the PGA Tour at this week's Memorial Tournament in Dublin, Ohio.
Snedeker's last appearance on the Tour came back at the Fortinet Championship last September. He finished tied for 59th, but he started experiencing pain in his chest during the second round. That ailment came after a 2016 sternum issue, which prompted him to go to South America for stem cell treatments over the next six years.
To deal with the chest injury, Snedeker opted to have a manubrium joint stabilization, a rare procedure in the United States.
For the experimental operation, Snedeker turned to Dr. Burton Elrod, a Nashville, Tenn., orthopedic and sports medicine surgeon who performed the same procedure 19 years ago to strengthen NFL quarterback Steve McNair's chest.
Due to risk of infection, Elrod never wanted to take part in the operation after that, though, but Snedeker persuaded him to do so.
"I talked him into one more," Snedeker said. "He told me, 'This is the last one.' "
Snedeker underwent the surgery on 1 December and was left with a 6-inch scar in addition to being relatively immobilized for the next four weeks. He did not play any golf until the first day of April, taking the time off to go on vacation and spend time with family.
However, the 42-year-old Snedeker didn't want to call it a career just yet.
"I was like, you know what, gotta jump into the deep end at some point," Snedeker said. "Until I start doing it every day, week after week, month after month, I won't know for sure if the surgery solved all of my pain issues, but so far, so good."
Snedeker is a nine-time winner on the Tour. His last title came at the Wyndham Championship in August 2018. It was the second time he won the event after prevailing in 2007.