Sophie Wessex, 57, is a favourite among royal watchers, always pulling out all the stops to ensure she looks fabulous for public engagements, but she very nearly missed one huge event in the royal calendar due to a serious accident.
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Days before her nephew Prince William's wedding to Princess Kate, the Countess of Wessex was involved in a serious riding accident while hacking on her horse in Windsor Great Park. The royal, who was 46 at the time, was taken to hospital following the accident.
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Prince Edward's wife had an X-ray at the Princess Margaret Hospital in Windsor, which revealed she had broken a rib and badly bruised several others.
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Sophie was sent home with painkillers to ease the discomfort – broken ribs tend to be left to heal on their own, as there's not much that can be done to splint or support them.
Ever the trooper, Sophie still attended the Prince and Princess of Wales' pre-wedding dinner, and the ceremony itself, which saw her daughter, Lady Louise Windsor, who was seven at the time, act as bridesmaid.
Sophie Wessex was injured while riding her horse
Sophie isn't the only royal to injure her ribs. Mike Tindall, who is married to Princess Anne's daughter Zara, did serious damage to his ribs while playing rugby in 2008.
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A tackle left him with a misplaced rib, which punctured his lung and tore a hole in his liver.
Sophie Wessex pictured at Prince William and Princess Kate's wedding
Following the ordeal, Mike was in intensive care for three nights and explained to The Daily Mail: "If the boot had struck me an inch or two higher or lower then I would just have cracked a couple of ribs.
"That's not very pleasant, and I would have been out of rugby for a few weeks, but I would have settled for that in light of what happened instead."
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