*Breaking* news... but not too broken we hope.  Natalie Gumede is suffering with sciatica and a compressed disc in her back after an old injury resurfaced this week.

Natalie, who is currently at the top of the Strictly leader board with 36 points, has had to miss two days of training to fit in an MRI scan, physio treatment and epidural this week.  Although she and her dance partner Artem Chigvintsev haven’t had as long to rehearse, Natalie will still be dancing on Saturday night. 

Natalie is ecstatic that she will be able perform this weekend and we wish her a continued recovery!  

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  • Comment number 51. Posted by Sigi

    on 26 Oct 2013 19:20

    I hope you both get better!!!! :(

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  • Comment number 50. Posted by flower

    on 24 Oct 2013 09:59

    Right on Ballroom Classic! I am of the same opinion about Len's attitude to Natalie. As a professional himself he sees that to encourage those who have never danced is most important & may also affect the way that the public vote. Natalie does not need this encouragement, aside of that pertaining to her injury, as she is already, to all intents & purposes, a professional dancer & only needs more subtle comments about how to improve her already near-perfect technique.

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  • Comment number 49. Posted by Ballroom Classic

    on 23 Oct 2013 16:23

    In response to Laurena (comment 47) could it be that Len also considers that she has been dancing since the age of 4,and was considering adancingcareer until she injured her back - that means that she would be a higher standard which was evident from week one so has she really 'done well' or is it just the standard she was at. Don't get me wrong I think she is a good dancer but is it really fair to theothr contestant and the viewers as per Flowers comment in comment 48.

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  • Comment number 48. Posted by flower

    on 23 Oct 2013 12:13

    I totally agree with 'that's entertainment' (comment 19). I'm sure Natalie is a lovely girl, but this is a recurrance of an injury she sustained in her late teens which stopped her dancing career. Employing professional dancers like this year after year is bad news for the viewers & unfair for the other contestants. Please do not do it again!

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  • Comment number 47. Posted by Laurena

    on 20 Oct 2013 18:14

    I think Natalie is amazing. From week one you could see how great she was going to be and beautiful too. Still I do wonder why Len is so unappreciative of her and often dismisses how well she has done. Not good for a head judge, he seems to have favourites rather than appreciate good performances. Good luck Natalie I hope you go all the way

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  • Comment number 46. Posted by flatfeet

    on 20 Oct 2013 13:12

    Natalie you were brilliant last night in the quickstep it's simply magical when you and Artem dance together. Do hope it's going to be possible for you to stay in the competition and that you and Artem can KEEP DANCING!

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  • Comment number 45. Posted by MrsArcanum

    on 20 Oct 2013 09:35

    @ 44 Queenie

    As someone who is suffering back pain at the moment my day goes something like. Bed = fine no problems. Get up back twinges, the more I am up or when I sit down the back pain gets worse. Later in the day as I move around more the pain is reduced. So by the time I go to bed again I feel pain free. These are my symptoms and how my day goes. Now if I could take or get the treatment Natalie does I could be skipping around like a lamb in spring for most of the day.

    Making assumptions about how people manage pre-existing problems without medical expertise is neither kind nor fair. Remember Natalie has had this problem for 10 years and has managed it well. Doing something she loves and perhaps getting too carried away has caused a flare up.

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  • Comment number 44. Posted by Queenie

    on 19 Oct 2013 18:58

    I love the program!
    But as someone with spine problems I seriously question whether the theatre of the occasion has over egged the back problem?

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  • Comment number 43. Posted by Figaro77

    on 19 Oct 2013 15:55

    Good luck, Natalie for tonight. I am glad you are performing tonight. It wouldn't be the same without you.

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  • Comment number 42. Posted by MrsArcanum

    on 19 Oct 2013 11:26

    Natalie is very lucky to get a diagnosis so quickly. Not so lucky with the terrible particular problems she has.

    I do envy her the epidural. Many pack problems are caused/aggravated by muscles working against the best interest of the body, an epidural is perfect for allowing correct alignment of the spine when the pain would otherwise make you spasm or hunch over causing still more damage.

    Good luck for Saturday Natalie and I hope Artem learns to choreograph stunningly to your physical ability and limitations.

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