Canberra winger Jordan Rapana will miss the third Test and return to Australia on Wednesday after scans revealed a shoulder dislocation in New Zealand's 20-14 loss to England on Sunday.
Rapana suffered the injury reaching out in an attempted try-scoring effort midway through the first half and played on until leaving the field late in the loss.
The 29-year-old will seek further treatment options when he returns to the nation's capital.
Raiders coach Ricky Stuart will be sweating on more results after losing Josh Hodgson for an extended period in the NRL this season due to a knee injury in last year's World Cup.
If surgery is required, rehabilitation could keep Rapana on the sidelines for as long as six months.
A Kiwis spokesman said coach Michael Maguire is confident New Zealand's medical staff handled Rapana's injury professionally.
The Kiwis have options at their disposal with Rapana ruled out of the third Test with Jahrome Hughes, Jamayne Isaako and Peta Hiku touring as part of the extended squad.
Maguire suggested further changes could be made to the line-up with the series lost.
"I'll have a look and assess the video," he said.
"I've got some quality kids sitting on the sidelines. It's obviously tough to take when you are in the position we're in, but it will define us as a group, as well."
Maguire admitted following Sunday's second Test defeat that England targeted the right edge as a result of Rapana's discomfort.
England ran in their four tries down the Kiwis' right defensive edge to seal a series win.
"England to their credit, capitalised on that space, they worked away and came back," Maguire said
"We had a back-rower in the centres isolated and they got the try off the back of that."
Maguire lamented a poor completion rate from his team in the final quarter of the game, in similar fashion to last week's loss in Hull with the game on the line.
New Zealand skipped out to an eight-point lead but completed at less than 60 per cent in the final 30 minutes.
"That's the difference of what makes Test footy. You've got the best of each country playing, you need to understand that each play is so important," Maguire said.
"Those are the lessons our players are learning at the moment. If you don't put yourself back down that area of the park, you are not going to give yourself a chance, and we didn't do that in the second half.