Former Pantera star REX BROWN is to undergo surgery to have his gallbladder removed.
The bassist, who currently plays with heavy rockers Down, will also have polyps on his pancreas lasered off during the surgical procedure, which is scheduled to take place later this week (begs31Aug09).
According to, Brown is suffering from acute pancreatitis, which could prove deadly if not treated.
The musician was diagnosed after experiencing severe pain and discomfort on Down's recent European tour.
He will spend the next two months recovering but is expected to return to full health.
As a result of his surgery and recuperation, Brown has decided to sit out the remainder of Down's current North American tour.
He says, "I miss being with my brothers on tour but we're all cool with the fact that I need to take care of myself at this time."