Reggina defender Andrea Costa walked away after swallowing his tongue in his side's 2-1 win at fellow Serie A strugglers Bologna on Saturday.
Costa recovered quickly but was substituted and taken to hospital after losing consciousness in a collision in the second half and needing a physio to pull his tongue out of his throat.
Joint-bottom Reggina boosted their hopes of an unlikely escape from relegation with a battling victory.
Franco Brienza scored with their first attempt on 40 minutes when he beat the offside trap and rifled home before Edgar Barreto doubled the lead just after halftime when he chested down and fired in off the bar from 30 metres.
The club from the southern city of Reggio Calabria looked doomed just a few weeks ago but have taken seven points from their last three games to lie three behind fourth-bottom Torino, who visit Fiorentina on Sunday (1300).
Third-bottom Bologna, who hit the bar twice before Vangelis Moras netted late on, remain a point from safety with four games left while Lecce are level with Reggina before Sunday's trip to Juventus.
Inter Milan can stretch their lead at the top to 10 points if they beat Lazio at home later on Saturday with second-placed AC Milan going to Catania on Sunday.