WASHINGTON • Three weeks after he was arrested for driving under the influence, Tiger Woods said on Monday that he is seeking help for the way he handles medication for his chronic back problems and for a lifelong sleeping disorder.
It was a striking admission from the 14-time Major champion in the week before he is due to host his Washington-area PGA Tour stop.
"I'm currently receiving professional help to manage my medications and the ways that I deal with back pain and a sleep disorder," the 41-year-old said in a statement.
"I want to thank everybody for the amazing outpouring of support and understanding, especially the fans and players on Tour."
His agent Mark Steinberg confirmed that Woods has checked into rehabilitation.
"I'm not at liberty to say where he is, but he is receiving in-patient treatment," Steinberg told ESPN in a phone interview. "Tiger has been dealing with so much pain physically. And that leads to insomnia and sleep issues. This has been going on for a long time."
Woods has played only twice this year - missing one cut and withdrawing once. He underwent his fourth back surgery in April.
SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT
He is receiving in-patient treatment. Tiger has been dealing with so much pain physically. And that leads to insomnia and sleep issues. This has been going on for a long time.
MARK STEINBERG, Tiger Woods' agent, explaining that the golfer is seeking help for the way he handles medication.
His arrest came in the early morning hours of May 29, not far from his Florida home, when officers found him asleep at the wheel alongside a highway south of his home with two flat tyres. A breathalyser test revealed he did not have alcohol in his system, but he issued a statement later that day saying he had reacted poorly to a mix of prescription medications.
Since then, he had not addressed his arrest or the reasons leading up to it - why he was driving at 3am, why he was pointed away from his home, and whether he had an issue with the drugs he has been prescribed over the years for both his surgeries on his back and, dating back nearly a decade, to his knees.
The Quicken Loans National, the tournament Woods' foundation has both staged and benefited from for a decade, begins on June 29 at TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm.
Though he won the event twice - in 2009 and 2012 - he has frequently missed it because of injury. Yet when he has been unable to play, he has often come both for opening ceremonies and to help present the trophy on Sunday evening. Whether he will do that this time is unclear.