Denny Hamlin was released from the hospital Monday night, one day after suffering a compression fracture of his lower back in an accident at Auto Club Speedway, USA Today Sports reported.
Hamlin was involved in a violent last-lap crash that saw him hit a concrete retaining wall head-on. That portion of the wall was not covered by a SAFER barrier.
According to USA Today Sports reporter Jeff Gluck, Hamlin was wearing a back brace and was having difficulty breathing as he was speaking with the assembled media.
"The position I was in, I couldn't breathe at all," Hamlin said. "I'm still having a hard time breathing. Literally, when I felt a pop, I couldn't move at all and I knew I had to get flat to my back to be able to breathe again. That's why I rushed out and just laid flat on the ground to start breathing again."
Hamlin is unsure if he will be in the car when the Sprint Cup Series returns from Easter break April 7 at Martinsville Speedway, and, according to the report, will meet with Dr. Jerry Petty on either Wednesday or Thursday.
"He's going to spend tomorrow looking at scans to distinguish what the next step is," Hamlin said. "We're kind of leaving the analyzing for him on what to do either surgery-wise or just stick with a brace and let it heal itself. Either way, obviously, both of them take a lot of time.
"I don't want to make it worse. "It's not worth that."