Coach Wooden entered L.A. area hospital Sunday

Updated: April 10, 2007, 2:45 AM ET
Associated Press

LOS ANGELES -- Former UCLA basketball coach John Wooden has been hospitalized for a possible reaction to arthritis medication, but is doing well, according to his daughter.

John Wooden
Wooden

The 96-year-old Hall of Fame coach was admitted to a Los Angeles-area hospital Sunday when he began suffering symptoms similar to those he experienced a year ago when he was hospitalized for diverticulitis, inflamed pockets in the colon.

Doctors now suspect he suffered from a reaction to a combination of medications, including one for arthritis, Wooden's daughter Nancy Muehlhausen said.

"He's absolutely doing fine," Muehlhausen said Monday. "He's laughing and cracking jokes. He looks good."

Wooden had four blood transfusions since Sunday, she said. Doctors could keep him in the hospital for a couple of more days.

"Dad is in good spirits," Muehlhausen said. "He lost a lot of blood but has gained his strength back thanks to the transfusions."

Wooden was hospitalized for three days in April 2006 for diverticulitis. It can lead to serious infection if contents from the intestine leak into the abdomen.

Patients with mild diverticulitis are usually treated with antibiotics and placed on a liquid or high-fiber diet. In severe cases, surgery may be required to remove the diseased part of the colon.

Wooden was scheduled to speak Wednesday to the Kansas State University athletic department but had to cancel.

His last public appearance was March 29 when he attended the McDonald's All-American Game in Louisville, Ky. Wooden, who has been involved in that game since its inception, serves as overall chairman of the game and as an adviser to the selection committee.

Wooden retired from UCLA in 1975 with a record of 620-147 in 27 years as coach. The Bruins won 10 national titles under his helm, including seven in a row. The streak included 38 straight NCAA tournament victories.


Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press