Alex Burrows has been missing for a month on the scoresheet. Now he'll be missing from the Vancouver Canucks' lineup, too, for at least the next four weeks.

The veteran winger underwent surgery here Monday for a broken jaw, the day after Burrows was hit in the face by teammate Chris Tanev's clearing attempt during the Canucks' 3-2 National Hockey League win against the Carolina Hurricanes.

After a second-period visit to the Canucks' medical room, Burrows returned to the ice and finished Sunday's game.

He told The Vancouver Sun after the game that he had suffered some fractured teeth, but that his worst fear was that an artery in his neck had been split by the force of the puck.

Burrows, who spit out a mouthful of blood on his way off the ice, had a cut on his neck and was still bleeding inside his mouth after the game. But he felt well enough to participate in a team dinner and festivities Sunday night in Nashville after the Canucks chartered here from Raleigh, NC.

It was only after Burrows awoke Monday in severe pain that the Canucks sent him to see an oral surgeon, whose X-rays revealed a fracture that required surgery.

“It's at least four weeks or so,” Canucks coach John Tortorella said of Burrows' recovery time. “He's out for a while. It's been a tough year for him. He's a big part of … the soul of our team. He works hard. He's such a great teammate. Everybody likes to have him around. It hurts. It's a big blow to us, but we have to move by it and get ready to play our next game.”

Burrows suffered a broken foot while blocking shot in the Canucks' season-opener on Oct. 3, and did not play again until Oct. 28. Despite playing mostly in his regular first-line spot beside Daniel and Henrik Sedin, Burrows has not scored in 17 games this season.

Including the end of last season, his regular-season goal drought is 22 games — Burrows' longest slump in nearly seven years.

“You don't always have to look at goals and assists; you want them, but he was doing a lot of other things well for us,” centre Brad Richardson said after Tuesday morning's skate. “I knew he was hurting and got cut inside his mouth, but he seemed OK. He came out for dinner (Sunday night) and then I heard yesterday he had surgery. I didn't think he was going to need surgery and have his jaw wired shot. It's too bad, a big loss.”