ALEX BROWN, the Gloucester and England second row, has fractured the radius on his right forearm and underwent surgery to plate the injury on Saturday night.
The 27-year-old sustained the injury during the second half of Gloucester's 31-21 Guinness Premiership victory over Harlequins on Saturday and was operated on at the Winfield Hospital in Gloucester later that evening.
Gloucester's head coach Dean Ryan told www.gloucesterrugby.co.uk: "It is incredibly bad luck for Alex and for the club he has sustained this injury. He will have our total support and backing as he begins his recovery.
"It is obviously a considerable blow but we are fortunate we have plenty of options in that area and it will provide opportunities for other players within the squad."
Fly-half Billy Burns was named Man of the Match after the 35-14 European Rugby Challenge Cup victory over Stade Rochelais on Thursday evening, and was full of praise for all his team mates for the win after a short turnaround.
Gloucester have been in good form in recent weeks, but Backs Coach Tim Taylor knows that the Cherry and Whites will have to be at their best on Thursday evening (kick off 7:45pm) against a Stade Rochelais side flying high this season.
Speaking to GRTV after the bonus point win over Bristol, back row Lewis Ludlow revealed that despite a tricky first half, Gloucester backed their skills to come through, a faith that was evident in a strong second half showing.
Willi Heinz scored Gloucester's second try as the Cherry and Whites overturned a disappointing first 40 minutes and 0-6 half time deficit, to earn a 26-18 Aviva Premiership victory over Bristol Rugby on Saturday.
Gloucester's much changed side had to overcome conceding an early try on Thursday evening, but responded in style to down Stade Rochelais by 35 points to 14 in the European Rugby Challenge Cup and set up a mouthwatering return fixture next weekend.
After taking 11 points from their last three games in the Aviva Premiership, including bonus point wins against Wasps and Bristol, Gloucester will be looking to continue their good form when they welcome La Rochelle to Kingsholm.