Former PGA Tour Golfer Casey Martin Has Leg Amputated Due to Circulatory Disorder

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIOctober 16, 2021

FILE - In this June 15, 2012, file photo, Casey Martin drives to the fifth green during the second round of the U.S. Open Championship golf tournament at The Olympic Club in San Francisco. Martin, the Oregon golf coach who successfully sued the PGA Tour for the right to use a cart because of a rare circulatory disease, had his right leg amputated in what he told Golf Digest was always going to be “my destiny.” The magazine, which has been in touch with Martin over the last few weeks, reported on its website that he had surgery Friday, Oct. 14, 2021, and was recovering at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)
AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File

Former PGA Tour golfer and current Oregon men's golf head coach Casey Martin underwent surgery to amputate his right leg above the knee because of a rare circulatory disorder.

Max Adler of Golf Digest reported the news Saturday. Martin's three-and-a-half-hour surgery occurred Friday, and he is currently recovering at the Mayo Clinic.

Martin has Klippel-Trénaunay syndrome, which the Mayo Clinic defines as follows:

"Klippel-Trenaunay (klih-PEL tray-no-NAY) syndrome ― also called KTS ― a rare disorder found at birth (congenital) involving abnormal development of blood vessels, soft tissues (such as skin and muscles), bones, and the lymphatic system. The main features include a red birthmark (port-wine stain), overgrowth of tissues and bones, and vein malformations with or without lymphatic abnormalities.
"Although there is no cure for KTS, the goal is to manage symptoms and prevent complications."

"The doctors prepared us for the worst-case scenario," Cameron, who is Casey's older brother, told Adler.

"But the report is [the doctors] feel it went well, as they were able to save as much of the bone above the knee as they had hoped. This should give him a good shot at a prosthesis that will be effective."

As Adler noted, Martin broke his right leg two years ago. He spent two years in a cast and had numerous injections, but his tibia did not heal.

During his playing days, Martin successfully sued the PGA Tour for the right to use a golf cart during tournaments. The case went all the way to the Supreme Court, which sided with Martin in 2001 and noted that the PGA Tour must adhere to the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Martin's most notable finish was his 23rd-place result at the 1998 U.S. Open. His lone full season occurred in 2000, which featured a 17th-place finish at the Touchstone Energy Tucson Open.

He made sporadic appearances in the years after the 2000 season and ultimately changed career course when he joined Oregon as its men's golf coach.

Martin has enjoyed a storied career in Eugene, guiding Oregon to the 2016 Division I title. He has coached Oregon for 15 years entering the 2021-22 campaign.