Rafael Nadal: My Thought Is To Keep Playing With Appendicitis, Then Have Surgery After London
by Staff | October 8th, 2014, 1:57 pm
  • 60 Comments

Before even returning to Spain, Rafael Nadal said today that he’ll forego immediate surgery on his appendix so he can finish out the season.

“My thought is to continue with Basel, Paris and London,” Nadal said after a 6-3, 7-6 loss to Feliciano Lopez. “It’s true that the past few months I did not have the best of luck. I didn’t have the best of luck since Wimbledon. I was playing a good year, very positive year. After that I was unlucky with the wrist, what’s going on now. Now there remains three more tournaments for me.

“Little bit of pain, but that’s not the tougher thing now,” he said. “Tougher thing always, as you know, when you have few days in bed, the process that I had. Even today the doctors told me that I was very, very lucky that I [did not need] to go for surgery straight, can save with antibiotics. You can imagine that all the treatment was little bit aggressive at the beginning. In three days I am playing.

“I am a little bit more dizzy and feel with not much power than pain. Pain, I think, is under control. That’s important. I think I was lucky for that. Unlucky for another things, but for this thing I was lucky.”

Nadal says he will still have the surgery after the season.

“Even if it’s now under control, is obvious it’s going to come back,” he said. “I don’t want to come back, to have the same thing when I am in Australia, when I am in Indian Wells or Miami or when I am in Roland Garros. So I going to do it before the end of the year.”

Nadal will return to Spain then head to Switzerland for the October 20 Basel event.


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60 Comments for Rafael Nadal: My Thought Is To Keep Playing With Appendicitis, Then Have Surgery After London

RZ Says:

I’m glad Rafa’s no longer in pain. I’m assuming that he’s on a short-term course of antibiotics because if they are causing him to be dizzy, it doesn’t make sense for him to play.


Hippy Chick Says:

I do appreciate he wants to play the remaining tournies,but i just hope if he has the surgery when the seasons over,will he be recovered in time for the AO next year?


RZ Says:

It will be interesting to see how his opponents will approach their matches against him. They should come in with a lot of confidence and an aggressive game plan, as it would be an opportunity for a win against a top player who isn’t feeling well, but tennis is such a mental sport that I can also see some of them letting the opportunity pass them by.


Polo Says:

It’s eiither Nadal is hardheaded, or his doctors are not giving him good advice, or they have the wrong diagnosis. You don’t dilly-dally with an inflammed appendix especially if you don’t have a contraindication to surgery, especially one as minor as an appendectomy. There’s no point in keeping an organ that serves no purpose yet pose so much harm.


Hippy Chick Says:

Polo sounds like Russain roulette,your scaring me….


Polo Says:

Hippy Chick, the best way to treat an inflammed appendix is to remove it. Once inflammed it can rapidly turn worse, burst and infect the peritoneum and from there, the bloodstream. That’s what could make it fatal. Some surgeons, when they perform procedures in another organ that also happens to have ready access to the appendix, will ask the patient if they opt to have the appendix removed also.


Hippy Chick Says:

Polo whichever way you spin this it certainly aint good,Nadal wont be much of a tennis player if he ends up in a wooden box….


Polo Says:

To make it short, you don’t fool around with appendicitis. Remove it as soon as possible. There may be cases that respond with antibiotics but that’s not how you handle this problem. The appendix is a vestigial organ. It serves no purpose. There is no point in trying to save it. Recovery wfter surgery is so fast. Get it done now and he’ll be good as new for the Australian Open. Forget that year end championship. Health first before anything else.


Daniel Says:

Recovery is fast 3 to 7 days. He will be in hospital just for afew days. After that depends on the body but him as a young athlete think he will be back on court in 30 days or less.


Ruby Says:

I find it hilarious that there’s a poll regarding Rafa’s medical care, as if anyone here actually has seen his chart and has all the information a doctor needs to make a sound decision!

Use of antibiotics for a small appendix abscess is a well-documented treatment, usually followed by surgery 4-6 weeks later, which is exactly what Rafa is proposing. It might be more common in the US to proceed immediately to surgery but these other options have been studied and deemed safe (which is not the same as risk-free; there are always risks in any medical decision!)

There’s no reason to start talking about wooden boxes. If Rafa’s physicians feel he is not well enough to play I’m sure they will register that with him.


RZ Says:

I’m concerned about the effect a long flight might have on an inflamed appendix. Could the air pressure on take-off/landing make it worse? I travel frequently by plane for work trips, and I can tell that air travel messes with the system to a small degree. And that’s without any inflamed organs.


Ruby Says:

RZ, his appendix is better after the antibiotic treatment. I am certain he was cleared to fly. Might he have some discomfort flying? Of course! But there’s no extreme danger. Anyone can have a ruptured appendix (that is anyone who still has their appendix.) Rafa is more likely than others now that he has had an infection once, but the odds are very much on his side, especially this soon after treatment. A good portion of people who have IV antibiotics do not even require surgery ever. Granted, Rafa is not likely to take that risk. But it’s not by any means unheard of. People need to realize that appendicitis is not always an extreme emergency. That’s for large abscesses and ruptures.


Wog boy Says:

As much as I am sorry for Nadal I am more sorry for the players who are eventually going to play and beat him in Basel, Paris, London, unless he wins all three. Nobody will respect their wins and everybody will talk how Rafa is brave for playing and so on as it already happend last night with F Lopez, Lopez didn’t even show the emotions for beating Rafa. Pretty selfish and not fair for Rafa’s oponents.


Polo Says:

There have only been 6 randomized controlled trials comparing appendectomy vs antibiotic treatment. Antibiotics is only used for those with uncomplicated appendicitis diagnosed by CT scan. A meta-analysis of these studies showed that antibiotic therapy is not as efficacious as surgery because 10 – 20% of cases experience a recurrence. Surgery remains the standard treatment. Therefore, if Nadal has CT comfirmed uncomplicated appendicitis, he may do well to have antibiotics for now but should really consider having it removed. And the sooner, the better.


amadeus Says:

stop the drama, go for surgery ASAP


Ruby Says:

“There have only been 6 randomized controlled trials comparing appendectomy vs antibiotic treatment. Antibiotics is only used for those with uncomplicated appendicitis diagnosed by CT scan. A meta-analysis of these studies showed that antibiotic therapy is not as efficacious as surgery because 10 – 20% of cases experience a recurrence. Surgery remains the standard treatment. Therefore, if Nadal has CT comfirmed uncomplicated appendicitis, he may do well to have antibiotics for now but should really consider having it removed. And the sooner, the better.”

Which means that 80-90% of cases do not recur. Therefore, the odds are very much with him. Obviously, in Rafa’s case, it would be best to eventually have the surgery so as to remove the danger completely, which is exactly what he said he plans to do after the season. It’s not a drama. It’s not some big crazy bungee-jumpung moment. It’s a rational decision based on the information at hand that most people are not aware of.


Okiegal Says:

@Ruby…..the Rafa haters are so tore up that he chose to play through the ailment…..you know how they like to rag on him when he doesn’t play because of an injury or virus. He decided to hold off on surgery because he wants to finish the year and now he’s created a big drama…..he can’t win, I don’t care what he does. There’s a saying in Oklahoma…..”danged if you do and danged if you don’t” fits Rafa and his problems to a “t”…..

About the seriousness of the appendix…..I’m sure the CT scan cleared him to play. Must have not been very swollen. I hope he does have surgery soon to be ready for 2015!!


Humble Rafa Says:

I will definitely remember to post picture of my appendix on Facebook, so the honored members of this forum can diagnose the issue.


JoAnn West Says:

Nadal has proven himself!!!!! If you don’t like him ? don’t watch him. How simple minded are you. I am 72 yrs old love Tennis, Rafel Nadal is by far my favorite. I only wish in my life time left I could see him in person. We are retired and enjoy it on TV. JoAnn West


queen Says:

Could this blog get any more stupid? Wait, it just did.:-o


skeezer Says:

@queen,
Yep.


Okiegal Says:

Blame the blogger…..not the blogee!! I guess no one at TX wants to take credit for it……authored by “staff”……lol


Daniel Says:

Wog boy,

I agree with you. Every match he plays from now on will get more drama. Just hope he and Fed doesn’t play the final in Basel. Fed is only to pe in that scneario: if he neats Nadal, won’t count andif heloses to a sick Nadal, how the tphelk will je beat a fesh one:-)

But OTIH if Nada reaches Basel final is beacuse he willve playing grea and feelimg good whoch will be a good sign for hos health and fans. So the saying goes if you are playing you are fit to play, even if less than others.


skeezer Says:

Congrats to FL for the win, well deserved. Apparently Rafa ‘s conitnual excuses to the media in losing mean more to his Fan base than a ATP players well earned win against a top player. As a fan, its disheartening to see Rafa struggle, but the game still goes on.
Reading this Tennis X write up, Rafa never mentions how well his opponet played or that he(FL) was the better player today or even a howdy dudee congratulations to FL. Its all about ….who?.


Ruby Says:

Yeah, well they left out the part where he said he didn’t want to talk about his illness and that “Feli played better than me.” But it was there in his press conference, if you care to deal in facts.


Okiegal Says:

For the record, Rafa did say in his post presser that Feli was the better player today……


Okiegal Says:

@Ruby……we were posting at the same time. Yeah, I just read his presser and the first question was about his ailment and he did say it was not the time to talk about after losing and he had already talked about it the day before……but they kept on at him, as usual.


Hippy Chick Says:

I wouldve thought people wouldve cut him some slack just this once?had he pulled out many wouldve said hes chickening out?yet hes still there playing giving it his best shot,he did in fact say Feli was the better player and deserved to win,this isnt his best part of the season anyway as many always point out,so any Tom,Dick or Harry couldve beaten him there was never any guarantees fit Rafa or not?….


Giles Says:

Post October 8th 6.35 pm.
Pfffft. Is this guy for real?


Michael Says:

I am not sure it is prudent on the part of Rafa to postpone his surgery which might possibly jeopardise its chances of taking part at the Australian Open. I think it is better for him to take a break now to undergo the surgery and then come back with all guns blazing next year. Rather than physical, it is the mental part that is damaging Rafa on court. Psychologically, Rafa is not feeling strong today at the court and it shows in his game. There is always at the back of his mind as to how much his body can absorb and withstand his excesses on court which possibly explains the slow pace of his serve and short balls with low spin than he imparts naturally. In the end, he is the best judge. But all said and done, things are not looking too bright for Rafa at the moment.


Brando GOAT poster Says:

@Wog Boy: Good post and I agree. For obvious reason’s the talk in media is regarding Rafa is about this, players who beat him such as Lopez and others who will shall not celebrate much since they’ll be thinking: yay on the win, but it’s obvious the guy across the net has issues. In that sense: Rafa is being selfish since his issue will affect the winners claim to beating him. Understandably so since he’s injured but its not right. Put simply: he should do everyone a favour and have surgery, take time off now. No point playing matches, losing and the first question he has from the media is: how was the appendix today Rafa? It’s not fun for no one so he should just leave the tour for now and address this important issue.


Brando GOAT poster Says:

@Michael: spot on. Because of the issue he’s playing within himself and exerting himself like he does usually in a match. Which alone should make him think: hang on if I’m not going 100% in a match WTF is the point of me even being out court? Nothing Rafa, absolutely nothing. If you know you won’t compete 100% then there is no point playing Rocky and coming out on court since Uncle Toni sure aint no Adrienne!


Hippy Chick Says:

Well i wish he would take everyones advice and have the surgery NOW,but that aint gonna happen, hes already said ill wait till the end of the season,as i said earlier,this isnt traditionally his best time of the year anyway,so maybe he just wants to just try and give it his best shot,nothing ventured nothing gained?….


TennisVagabond.com Says:

Its ridiculous to say Rafa is selfish for playing if it might take attention away from his opponents. Rafa has no responsibility there. If he wants to play, and its medically safe, let him play.

But it also means there is no excuse for the FLo loss- if Rafa thinks he can keep playing through this– at his worst time of year, and a player who rarely enters tourneys disadvantaged– its because Rafa knows he can play and compete. If he loses, he loses.


Daniel Says:

No TV is not ridiculous. Had e didn’t know aout the appendix issue the “tone” of coments would be completelly different. As it was it was kind of “irrelevant”. No one taled that he lsot 2 matches ina row, or another first round loss to a player he should. Ot be losimg etc… Wewould be focusing only on his return to court after missing HC swing. Now we’ll be just waiitng to see if he willbe able to win any matches or who will beat him next with no ‘real’ feel. At least ismy take.

But whi knows his level can increase and by the time WTF comes he wll be going all out not worrying too much on the back of his mind.


Steve 27 Says:

Facepalm for him and Tio Tony. Instead of going home to recover, rest and prepare for Australia 2015 (the truly transcendent) decides to risk his health for inconsequential or devalued tournaments as Master Cup. Besides giving recognition to their rivals to vanquish a sore legend. This year end up looking like the frankly forgettable 2009 and 2011, where the latter played with stomach problems. What is the pleasure of playing if you’re not 100% and you risk your health not only in the short term, even in the long run?
Are the points, the position in the ranking, the money?
Disappointing decision of team Nadal , which hopefully will not bring future consequences


Felipe Says:

It was necessary to let everybody know that you have an issue but that you will play anyway??….what is the need to do that??…why nadal feel that is absolutely necessary to let all the world know that he is not 100%, but he will try anyway, no. He should have said nothing. What difference makes saying something like that if you will play anyway???


Steve 27 Says:

He is Rafa Nadal, not a poster named Filipe!


Felipe Says:

Look, the guys career has been amazing, definetly top 5 of all time (FEDERER / SAMPRAS / BORG / LAVER). Even if you are not a fan, you cant deny the impact that Nadal has and will have in future generations. But is really annoying that he feels the need to tell how his “medical situation” is before every tournament (outside of clay). Because he said NOTHING in 2009…but then came Soderling, and suddently he was carrying tendonitis during all the clay season. If the problem that he is carrying allows him to play a competitive match against a top 30 player, then, is a reasonable reason to let the world know that you are “not 100%”??….


Steve 27 Says:

Felipe, you should know the power of Media, ask Randall and Gainey. information means Mone$. Dont be naive and dont write nonsense. Is the era that we live. Dont be ashamed!


Felipe Says:

Hahahaah….thank you for the advice buddy. Both Nadal and Djokovic came last year to my country (Chile), and each earned 1 million dollars for showing up at the Massu farewell match!


Giles Says:

If Rafa had pulled out yesterday we would have the idiots echoing each other with “Typical Nadal. When he knows he can’t win a tourney he pulls out blah, blah, blah” The man can’t win with the media and the critics.
I am sure whatever decision made by his doctors in Mallorca will be right for Rafa. We should know soon.
Vamos Champ!


Okiegal Says:

@Giles……ditto…..danged if does and danged if he don’t……the guy can not win!!


Michael Says:

Brando @ 7.20,

True. When you do not have the self confidence within you, what is the point in playing at all ? It makes literally no sense for Rafa to continue playing when he is feeling the heat within his body as well as his game. I think Rafa’s predicament today is quite endemic and severe and he is falling between two stools. It would be prudent if he forgoes the rest of the year in his best interest. Deservingly or not, there is this perception that Rafa (knowingly or unknowingly) often brings up his injuries to undermine the victories of his opponents. As you rightly said, the press people today will be only quizzing him about his ailment rather than dissecting the match. So, the ball is in his court to take the right call and undergo the surgery now.


Hippy Chick Says:

Michael you can appeciate why hes giving it a go though,he wont win either way on this one,if he plays and loses its an excuse,if he plays and wins its in spite of the ilness,if he doesnt play hes chickening out because he doesnt feel he can win blahdy blah,its what called a catch 22 situation,as ive said repeatedly on this thread this time of year was never his best anyway,so there was never any guarantee even a fit and healthy Rafa would beat the likes of Lopez or Klizan, its not fair on his opponents as the press with ask Rafa about the illness whether he wants them to or not,his attitude is cant win if i dont play,hes opted for surgery at the end of the season so theres nothing any of us can do about it,but for the sake of his health more than his tennis i wish common would prevail….


Michael Says:

Alison,

I hope common sense will prevail and Rafa has to take the break now to perform the surgery which will allow him enough time for recuperation ahead of the Australian Open. Please do not have an impression that I am casting aspersions on Rafa that he is faking his injuries or undermining the victory of his opponent bringing his injury factor et al. I know Rafa is too good in his heart and he will never stoop low to conquer. He doesn’t need it too because he is already a Legend and even if he retires today, his spectacular achievements speak for themselves to cover him with glory. But, it seems even if Rafa wants to be silent concentration less on his injuries, the press will not allow him and will keep raising it up time and again when quizzing him. So, he is compelled in a way to give some reactions which sometimes lands him in a soup due to the language barrier and the way he is not able to express himself clearly.


Hippy Chick Says:

Michael thanks for the feedback,you always put your point across in an eloquent and balanced way without ranting,i agree whichever way you spin this Rafa should have the surgery ASAP,forget this season as he aint winning much if hes not fit enough,best focusing on getting ready for the AO IMO….


Michael Says:

Alison,

Thank you !!

It is very difficult to be in a delicate position as Rafa is in today unable to decide one way or other. He is diagonised with Appendicitis, but it is not clear whether it needs a surgery or possible to be cured by mere antibiotics ? The conventional wisdom is that the ailment of appendicitis compulsorily needs a surgery as it has the tendency to flare up with no sign of serious symptoms. So, it does appear that Rafa has no other alternative but to undergo the surgery and this should be the right time as well since it is this time of the year that Rafa’s game always takes a nosedive. Let us see what is the decision of Rafa ? I am sure he would have a rethink of continuing playing after his defeat against Lopez – those kind of players Rafa would beat 9 out of 10.


Hippy Chick Says:

Michael this is no place for Rafa fans at the moment….


Giles Says:

No need for anymore worthless speculation over what Rafa should or shouldn’t do. The matter is in the hands of the doctors who will decide what is best for him!
Just wait and see!!


Michael Says:

Alison,

Equanimity is always the greatest quality to possess. Rafa has seen such downfalls earlier too and he came back with a bang. History will repeat itself – Why not ? There were many who wrote off Rafa but he always disappoints them and rises as a phoenix from the ashes.


Hippy Chick Says:

Michael to add i think Rafas been unfair,another player surely deserves to take his spot at the WTFs?


Giles Says:

Why is Rafa being unfair HC eh?? He earned his right to be at the WTF. Now it is a matter for the doctors to decide whether he can play on without risk till the end of the season OR have the op now. If he pulls out someone else will replace him. Why does he have to decide now? What you mean is he should end the suspense?? Why??


Michael Says:

Alison,

As I said it is Rafa’s call. If he thinks that WTF is more important than the Australian Open as it is a tournament that he has never won before, then certainly he has a point. But as Giles pointed out, there is no urgency on his part to hasten his decision to play or not ? He can even take a call at the last moment. He has already earned his place in the tournament for his achievements during the year and that is something any player can feel pride about as this tournament just respects consistency rather than spurts of brilliance.


Margot Says:

Lol there is another semi final taking place today. y’know.
Speaking of which, it’s gr8 to see wee Geeloo looking so happy on court and playing so well, injury free thankfully. He actually gave the most enormous smile at his box at one point. Doubt if Guy was there….
And doing Andy such a huge favour in the process ;)
Nole is in fantastic form, can’t see him losing myself. But prepared to eat my words of course.
Hoping for TWO excellent matches!


Margot Says:

Damn! Posted this on completely wrong thread. Sorry guys. Delete button, please.


Steve 27 Says:

AO plus the double career grand slam or the devalued Master Cup.
Rafa and Tio Tony will regret about their decision.

The worst enemy of Nadal is himself!


Okiegal Says:

@Steve 27………Why will they regret it? You don’t think there will be enough recovery time between surgery and the AO?? Curious……I want feedback….Thanks……I’m bored too!! Lol


Polo Says:

I just read Felipe’s post which was quire interesting. Has there been any player aside from Nadal who keeps announcing his medical problems prior to almost every tournament he is competing at?


Okiegal Says:

Has there ever been an interviewer on the planet that their first question to Rafa wasn’t about an injury??

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