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Posted 24 Feb 2001   For week ended July 09, 2000
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News about Mormons, Mormonism,
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Sent on Mormon-News: 06Jul00

Summarized by Kent Larsen

LDS Pro Bruce Summerhays Leads Senior Tour . . . To Arthritis Relief
New York NY Daily News 3Jul00 S2
By Kristie Ackert: Daily News Sports Writer

NEW YORK, NEW YORK -- LDS Pro Golfer Bruce Summerhays has led the way, and its helped his golf game. Summerhays, who plays on the Senior PGA Tour, was the first player on the tour to try a new arthritis drug, Celebrex, which is now extending the careers of more than 80 players on the tour.

Arthritis has been a big factor in the senior tour, says Dr. Paul Wright, a tour physician, "The players were always looking for a way to cope with arthritis. They would take the old medications, but still end up taking several pain relievers like ibuprofin during a round. Arthritis was not only affecting their play, but it was cutting some careers short."

Because of his arthritis, Summerhays was cutting back on the number of games he played, and considering retirement. "I wasn't able to practice as much as I should have. I would finish a round, sit down to have a bite to eat and not want to get up. I couldn't go out and hit the practice tee like I should have. The pain would wear me out. That just wasn't the way I wanted to play golf, as a competitor, I wanted to play better," he said. "I just didn't feel like I could." He adds that Celebrex made an immediate difference, "I immediately felt a difference - that day," he said. "I felt better. By the end of that week, I had more energy. I could go out and hit practice balls, I was ready to play more golf at the end of the week."

But Bruce Summerhays wasn't the only member of his family to benefit from the drug. His daughter, Carrie, was diagnosed at age three with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. She has fought the condition all her life, taking as many as nine baby asprin a day as a child. But she didn't let the condition stop her. She excelled in high school sports, making all-state in golf, soccer and softball, before moving on to BYU, where she is currently a member of the women's golf team.

Recently, Carrie started taking Celebrex, and she says it has made a difference in her game also, "It only helps my golf game in that I am not playing through pain," she said. "I am not sore, I can practice more. I knew it was a good drug, I could see the difference in my father."

Meanwhile, other members of the family are making golf news this week. Both Boyd and Daniel Summerhays, also Bruce's children, are competing along with 150 other hopefuls in the 2000 Utah Men's State Amateur Golf Tournament. Daniel, 16, is playing in the tournament for the first time. He has gained notariety in Utah recently as one of the state's most promising amateurs.

Boyd Summerhays has just returned from an LDS mission to Argentina, and is competing to capture about the only Utah golf championship he didn't win before his mission. In play yesterday, Boyd shot a 69, just one stroke behind the lead. Following the tournament, Boyd is getting married and will return to Oklahoma State University, which is considered to have the best golf program in the US, where he is a member of the golf team.

See also:

State Am Starts Today With Its Deepest Field Ever Salt Lake Tribune 5Jul00 S2 By Jay Drew: Salt Lake Tribune


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