Birmingham City right-back Stuart Parnaby has admitted that his spirits have been sapped by his latest injury setback.
The 27-year-old former Middlesbrough man has not featured since late September due to back problems, although he has been an unused substitute twice in recent weeks.
He told the Birmingham Mail: "This is the most worried I've ever been about an injury.
"The first thing that enters your head is that will it be a long-term problem. I know that it's a bad way to think, but that's just the way it is.
"I've been thinking how long will I be able to stick it. It's something that has been lying idle for a while, it was years ago when I first did it.
"I slipped a disc and had another disc pushing on to a big nerve that runs down my back. It gives you irritation in other places, but I had just a big spasm in my back for a week or two.
"I had an injection to sort it out and hopefully that will settle it for a while and get me through the rest of the season.
"Now I feel more confident, I'm moving around quite well now and I've just got to be patient then hopefully it will sort itself out."