Sydney - Olympic 100 metres hurdles champion Sally Pearson has been ruled out of this year's world championships after shattering her left arm in a "traumatic" fall at the Rome Diamond League meeting earlier this month.
The 28-year-old Australian, who won the sprint hurdle world title in 2011 and finished second behind American Brianna Rollins in Moscow two years later, had surgery on the injury in Italy but will require another operation on Tuesday.
Pearson feared she might even have to have her lower arm amputated when it turned blue soon after she sustained the injury, which doctor's described as a "bone explosion" in her wrist.
"I've never broken a bone, I've never had stitches or surgery before," Pearson told reporters on the Gold Coast on Monday. "Doing all of that in one, in a different country, was very traumatic for me.
"But I do put things into perspective and think I am very lucky with what happened.
"If it had been the ankle, it would be a completely different story right now and I'd be telling you something different."
Pearson said she was disappointed to miss out on the Aug. 22-30 world championships in Beijing, where she won silver at the 2008 Olympics, but thought the enforced rest might help her bid to retain her Olympic title in Rio de Janeiro.
"I guess I haven't had a break since 2003, my first Australian team," she added.
"I think this will be a very good mental and physical break for me leading into the Olympics next year."
Australia's head coach Craig Hilliard said it was a major blow to lose the country's most successful active track and field athlete from the team.
"Sally's our team captain and she gives great leadership and gets on really well with all the athletes," he said.
"It will be a big loss but the critical thing is that she needs time mentally and physically to get over this."