Giants DE Kiwanuka reveals he has herniated disc in neck

New York Giants defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka revealed Thursday that he has a herniated disc in his neck, and doctors haven't set a timetable for his return to the field, the Newark Star-Ledger reported.

Kiwanuka, who hasn't played since Sept. 26, was back at the Giants' training facility after visiting neck specialist Dr. Robert Watkins in Los Angeles. It was determined that the injury was a herniation, not a bulging disc, as the Giants had previously said.

"The difference between a bulge and a herniation is slight, but being that it is a herniation, it is something that's a little more severe," Kiwanuka said. "There are other things that go along with it, as far as how my body's made up that make it different than other people's would be. It's just a matter of waiting. They're very optimistic it'll heal on its own, but it's just going to take time."

Kiwanuka said he is feeling better, but there's no timetable for his return.

"They said everybody's body is different. We'll recheck it again in a couple of weeks," he said. "I've been pushing them to check it and check it over and over again. They've been doing that at my request, but realistically, is it going to change in a few days or a few weeks? No."

He said he has seen six doctors for their opinions on his injury.

"I'm trying to see every specialist in this area and across the country," Kiwanuka said. "I'm grateful that some doctor saw the severity of my situation, because it could have saved my life and my career. I just can't go back and play right away, because I could be one hit away from paralysis."

Kiwanuka had said there were slight variations between his disc issue and that of former Giants linebacker Antonio Pierce, who retired after doctors told him he'd need surgery to play again.

He also said he'd like to contact paralyzed Rutgers defensive tackle Eric LeGrand: "It's something I'd like to do in the near future."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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