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By ESPN Staff
Feb 28, 2006

Finnish newspaper saved my leg - Paatelainen

GLASGOW Feb 28 (Reuters) - Finnish player Markus Paatelainen has revealed how a newspaper article in his homeland helped save his leg from amputation after a blood clot developed hours after he was caught on the shin by a late tackle.

The 23-year-old brother of Finland international and current Cowdenbeath manager Mixu was left in agony when he was scythed down playing for the Scottish fourth division side in a 4-0 league win at Elgin City on Saturday.

He began to feel severe pain in the leg on the journey home and remembered a story he read about impact-related blood clots.

Paatelainen, a former Aberdeen player, told The Scottish Sun: 'My parents send me Finnish newspapers every week and I read about an ice hockey player who was in a similar situation two weeks ago.

'When I started to feel the pain while I was on the bus it was unbearable and I thought it might be the same thing. I knew I had to go to hospital then so I got Mixu to take me.'

Markus was caught on the outside of his shin by the tackle and also twisted his knee causing a blood clot.

Hospital x-rays revealed there was no break, but doctors spotted the clot after measuring pressure on the shin and operated immediately at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary.

'The family and everyone associated with the club are shocked by what has happened but Markus has been very fortunate,' Mixu Paatelainen told the Cowdenbeath website.

'Such an operation should normally take place within six hours but Markus was not operated on until 3.30am on Sunday morning. But thanks to the expertise of the medical team the surgery was a success.

'Markus will have a second operation tomorrow and will be sidelined for two to three months.'