Forward Todd Bertuzzi has been hospitalized, has taken four needles' worth of treatment, and has been so frustrated that he has feared for his hair. Now he's hoping a little vitamin D can help his recovery.

Bertuzzi is with his Detroit Red Wings teammates on a road trip for the first time since severe back pain left him limping out of St. Louis on Feb. 7. He hasn't played since that game, and this trip -- the Wings play the Anaheim Ducks today and Sunday, play at Phoenix on Monday, and finish up with the Sharks on Thursday at San Jose -- won't see Bertuzzi in the lineup, either. But at least he was well enough to sit on a plane for the five-hour flight, and he's riding a bike and thinking about skating.

"Just have to keep getting better every day, maybe try skating near the end," Bertuzzi said. "I can't afford any setbacks."

Bertuzzi has just seen how easily recovering from a sore back can derail; his right-hand man and understudy, Darren Helm, didn't even make this trip, after suffering a setback just as it appeared he might be days from playing. "If anything," Bertuzzi said, "that's made me more cautious."

Bertuzzi, has had back problems before -- he needed disk surgery in 2006, causing him to miss several games after he was traded to Detroit in the spring of 2007. He joked this stretch has been so frustrating, he has come close to "pulling out all my beautiful hair."