(UPDATED) Prayers are now being asked for Ranidel de Ocampo as the Gilas Pilipinas forward awaits the result of an MRI after being left immobile in a freak accident while lifting weights with Talk 'N Text teammates at the Moro Lorenzo gym inside the Ateneo campus in Quezon City.
Talk 'N Text team therapist Dexter Aseron told Spin.ph that De Ocampo was doing squats with weights of around 100 kilos when he suddenly collapsed after feeling a 'strange twinge' in his back.
"Parang may pumitik sa likod nung nag-we weights. Medyo mabigat eh. Mahigit isang daang kilo yun (binuhat niya)," said Aseron, who was with De Ocampo at the time of the interview.
Aseron bared that De Ocampo was able to walk for a few meters but soon complained of severe numbing of his legs.
"Nung una nakakalakad pa. Pero eventually hindi na niya kinaya, sinakay na namin agad sa stretcher," he said of De Ocampo who was rushed to the Makati Medical Center for check-up and an MRI scan.
An update given by Talk 'N Text manager Virgil Villavicencio bared de Ocampo is done with his X-rays but will be confined 'for a day or two' regardless the result of the tests.
Villavicencio said the pain has eased a bit but a tense de Ocampo has been given valium through his IV to help him relax. He has also been given pain relievers, the TnT team manager added.
De Ocampo has also received a call from team owner Manny V. Pangilinan, Villavicencio added.
The longtime national team therapist said De Ocampo is used to lifting that much in routine weight training and that what happened was purely an accident.
"Nakaka-isang set na eh. Bigla lang talaga eh. Parang namali ng buhat. May guide siya nun eh. Hindi namin alam why bigla na lang ganun nangyari," he said while stressing that De Ocampo is very much conscious since the time of the accident.
Aseron is asking the fans of the PBA, not just the Texters supporters, to offer a prayer that the status of De Ocampo is not career-threatening.
"Honestly, worried kami na baka may nerves o may naapektuhang part ng spine niya pero sana hindi. Kaya nga we need prayers from the fans. Ranidel is not just a player of Talk 'N Text, he is one of our heroes in the national team. So sad that this happened to him, he just wanted to keep himself in tip-top shape," said Aseron.
The MRI result is expected to be released at around 5 p.m. on Sunday.
Aseron, however, draws confidence from the fact that there was no forceful blow on the spine and back of the 6-foot-6 forward from Tanza, Cavite to cause a major injury.
Meanwhile, Philippine Broadcasting Service resident physician Dr. Claro Cayanan suspects De Ocampo suffered a low back pain syndrome probably caused by improper lifting technique.
"Due to improper lifting technique yan eh. Magmamanhid talaga 'yan pero ortho case yan. Ang mag-a-assess dyan kung nakakatakot o hindi eh yung MRI ng lumbo-sacral spine. Most probably dun ang suspect natin," said Cayanan.
Cayanan said there isn't much threat of a major injury.
"Hindi naman, pero kailangang makita ang MRI. Wala namang serious blow o tumama sa kanya o nabali 'yung likod niya, kaya hindi tayo dapat matakot ng husto," he said.
Asked if he suspects a herniated or slipped disc, Cayanan said: "No, we have to wait for the MRI result. If you are thinking of a herniated disc, we wait for that.
"You ask me kung delikado yan? I think, hindi naman. Wala tumama sa likod nyan o spine area, so most proably and I am hoping, muscle spasm lang 'yan. It happens. Kaya we just need to pray harder pa rin," said Cayanan.