It's hard to call the steps of a man that stands seven feet tall baby steps, so I'll just say that the UFC's Stefan Struve is ready to take make his move back toward the Octagon.
In August, Struve received grim news when he was diagnosed with a leaking aortic valve and an enlarged heart. At that time, Struve spent a week in the hospital undergoing tests. Following the tests, physicians recommended Struve treat the condition with medication for two months, at which point they would reevaluate and determine a course of action for the UFC heavyweight.
Struve recently hit the two month mark. Struve's manager, Lex McMahon released the following statement to MMAFighting.com after Struve's follow up meeting with his doctors:
Stefan Struve recently had a follow-up visit with his doctors to determine the efficacy of the treatment protocol he had been prescribed.
During his visit, the doctors informed Stefan that the leakage back into his heart has been greatly reduced.
Additionally, his heart is not as enlarged as it was, but since it is still enlarged, they are attributing it to a condition called 'Sport Heart' or 'Athletic Heart Syndrome,' which is fairly common in athletes who train rigorously for more than one hour per day and is generally considered benign.
Stefan's doctors have cleared him to return to training so they can evaluate how he responds over the next several months.
At this time the doctors are suggesting that he continue with the medicine and do not recommend surgery.
The general prognosis for Stefan's health is very positive. Stefan is focused on returning to the Octagon as soon as he can do so safely.
Stefan wants to thank his fans, the UFC, Dana White and Lorenzo Fertita for the tremendous amount of support they have provided him.
The 25-year-old Struve is 25-6 over the course of his career. He is currently 9-3 in the UFC's heavyweight division. Struve last fought at UFC on Fuel 8 where he lost to Mark Hunt via third round knockout. The loss ended Struve's four-fight winning streak. In addition to the loss that night, Struve left the Octagon with a broken jaw courtesy of Hunt's left hand.
Struve has vowed that he will do anything in his power to get back into the Octagon and fight again in the UFC.
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