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Douglas making progress after surgery

Severely injured jockey Rene Douglas continues to make steady progress after undergoing seven-hour back and neck surgery following a one-horse spill Saturday at Arlington Park, but a long-term prognosis for Douglas's recovery still is murky.

Doreen Razo, wife of jockey Eddie Razo and close friends with Douglas's wife, Natalie, has been with Douglas every day since the accident, and said Douglas, 42, was alert and responsive, and no longer was under heavy sedation as of Wednesday morning. Doreen Razo said that Douglas still "doesn't have any sensation yet in his feet or his legs," but that does not signify permanent paralysis.

"They think it would start at his thigh level and then on down," Razo said. "When the accident first happened, he did have sensation in his foot. He's got muscle tones that are working, that if he was in more serious condition would not work. The spine is a mysterious thing. We just have to wait for the swelling and everything to come down, and it's just going to be day by day. They didn't expect anything significant in terms of movement for five to seven days. They weren't worried that he wasn't able to feel this or feel that. Nothing has been a step back. All the doctors come out of there with a smile on their face."
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