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Pittsburgh Steelers' star quarterback Terry Bradshaw underwent arm surgery

SHREVEPORT, La. -- Pittsburgh Steelers' star quarterback Terry Bradshaw underwent surgery on his throwing arm under an alias, officials said Tuesday.

Charles Boyd, Doctor's Hospital administrator, said the four-time Super Bowl quarterback was admitted March 3 under the name Thomas Brady.

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Bradshaw, who owns a farm south of Shreveport, La., was operated on the same day for muscle tears in his right elbow, Boyd said. He left the hospital March 5.

"Many times, we have to admit people under an assumed name or under no name to keep the press and the fans away," Boyd said.

Dr. William Burdick, a Shreveport orthopedic surgeon, repaired small muscle tears in Bradshaw's elbow, Boyd said.

"Dr. Burdick was in consultation with the surgeon for the Pittsburgh Steelers," he said.

Burdick described Bradshaw as "a super patient" who made rounds one morning in the hospital to visit ill children.

"He really cheered them up," Burdick said.

Burdick said Bradshaw would do strength exercises until he can begin throwing a football in June.

Burdick has operated on a number of other NFL players, most recently Cincinnati linebacker Bo Harris, also a resident of Shreveport.

Bradshaw could not be reached for comment.

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In a copyright story in The Shreveport Times, Burdick explained Bradshaw's ailment as "the same thing as tennis elbow. Classic tennis elbow is on the outside of the elbow. This was on the inside. He should do fine.

"Lots of pitchers and other athletes who throw have it. It develops from small tears in the muscle," Burdick said.

Following surgery, Bradshaw went to New York to film a commercial and served as grand marshal for the Coca-Cola 500 stock car race last weekend in Hampton, Ga.

A Steeler spokesman in Pittsburgh said it was a "relatively minor thing caused by wear and tear" and the team made no mention of it because it never publicizes such off-season minor surgery to players. He said Bradshaw rarely does any throwing until late May at the team's minicamp.

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