Britney Spears has undergone arthroscopic knee surgery after falling badly while shooting her new music video in New York.

The pop princess now fears the injury will jeopardise the start of the North American leg of her ONYX HOTEL tour - which kicks off in just two weeks time.

Britney took a tumble on Tuesday (8JUN04) just after finishing a scene with rapper Snoop Dogg on the Manhattan set of her new single OUTRAGEOUS

An insider says, "She said she couldn't get up. Her bodyguard scooped her up in his arms and took her to hospital.

"She is in agony and scared she's done lasting damage to her knee."

A source at her record company JIVE confirms, "She obviously took a wrong step and blew out her knee. It was an old dance injury," but could offer no information on the outcome of the operation.

Britney was immediately rushed to a local hospital where doctors performed an scan and discovered floating cartilage in her knee.

It is the third time Britney has injured her knee. Four years ago (00) she underwent surgery after twisting her knee during a dance rehearsal and she had to cancel some concert dates earlier this year (04) after injuring herself while performing in Illinois.

Having wrapped up the European dates of her tour, Britney is due to take to the stage in Hartford Connecticut on 22 June (04).

10/06/2004 02:33