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SHARON RUSHES TO SIDE OF INJURED OZZY; Rocker has surgery after accident.

Byline: ALUN PALMER, EMMA BRITTON and TOM PARRY

OZZY Osbourne's distraught wife Sharon last night raced to his hospital bedside after he was badly hurt in a quad bike crash at his country mansion.

The 55-year-old rocker had emergency surgery following the smash in which he broke his collarbone, six ribs and a neck vertebra.

He had an operation to ease bleeding in his lungs and surgeons lifted his collarbone which was resting on a major artery.

The former Black Sabbath frontman, who suffers epilepsy, crashed the machine while he was riding around his vast estate in Chalfont St Giles, Bucks, where he has been taking time off from promoting his new single.

His publicist Cindy Guagenti said: "The accident occurred while he was taking a day off from his hectic promotional schedule surrounding the UK release of Changes, a song duet with daughter Kelly.

"Doctors revealed Ozzy had broken his collarbone, six ribs and a vertebra in his neck."

Guagenti said the injuries were not life threatening but confirmed Sharon had rushed to the Wexham Park hospital in Slough, Berks, to be at her husband's side.

A family friend added: "Ozzy is fine and in good spirit. He wasn't going at that great a speed but suffered some bad injuries.

"He is just grateful it was nothing more serious."

Ozzy, who owns several quad bikes, managed to struggle free and staggered to the manor house to raise the alarm after the crash. He was taken by ambulance to hospital.

The accident happened just hours after the singer claimed he was cured of a debilitating condition which he blames on a 42-pill-a-day habit.

He said he was now walking and talking normally after firing the doctor who prescribed him copious amounts of valium, dexederine, mysoline and other drugs.

Over 15 months he spent pounds 36,250 on prescription drugs and more than pounds 400,000 on doctor's fees.

Ozzy said: "I was wiped out on pills. I couldn't talk. I couldn't walk. I was lumbering about like the Hunchback of Notre Dame.

"It got to the point where I was scared to close my eyes at night afraid I might not wake up." His condition got so bad he even had tests for Parkinson's Disease.

Last week proud Ozzy told the Mirror he had virtually given up drinking since the spring.

He started filming the third series of The Osbournes, MTV's hit reality show about his family, a month ago. It is scheduled to begin on January 13.

An MTV spokesman said it was not clear how the accident would affect production or whether it might even be included in the latest series.

CAPTION(S):

CRASH: A quad bike; BIKER: Ozzy shows off his motorcycle at home in Los Angeles
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Dec 9, 2003
Words:460
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