Panthers quarterback Delhomme undergoes successful elbow surgery

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Carolina Panthers quarterback Jake Delhomme underwent ligament-replacement surgery on his right elbow on Thursday.

Delhomme decided last week to have the season-ending procedure, which calls for replacing the damaged ligament with a tendon from another part of the body. The 90-minute surgery was performed by team physician Dr. Pat Connor at Carolinas Medical Center.

"The surgery went well," Connor said in a statement. "His postoperative rehabilitation will start soon and he has an excellent prognosis."

Delhomme's rehabilitation is expected to take seven to nine months. Delhomme has said he's confident he'll be ready for the start of training camp in July.

The veteran quarterback, who has experienced elbow pain for several years, aggravated the condition when he was sacked in a win at Atlanta on Sept. 23. After sitting out two games in hopes he'd feel better, Delhomme again experienced pain when trying to throw, leading to the decision to have surgery.

The loss of Delhomme and a subsequent back injury to David Carr forced Carolina to sign 43-year-old Vinny Testaverde, who led the Panthers to a win at Arizona last Sunday. Coach John Fox has not chosen a starter for Carolina's next game, Oct. 28 against Indianapolis.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press

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