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Tito Ortiz had back surgery

buckeyebackbbuckeyeback Posts: 384
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:39 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Those of youj who follow the UFC know who Tito is. I just found out that he had back surgery after an interview on Spike TV. I did some online research and found his site where he explains it further. I gather that he had a minimally invasive fusion (yeah, I know, sounds like an oxymoron). I'll be very interested to see how long his career lasts post surgery. As we all know, fusion is meant to restore a "normal" lifestyle as possible. I don't think professional fighting will be warmly received by his adjacent discs that are taking on a larger role in his spine. I hope I am wrong.

Here is the link:




  • still fighting? I see a lot on the blog about charity work and visiting the troops, but not a lot about his fights. I would think that a fusion would relieve his pain but increase his potential for further injury. He does, however, have substantially more muscle mass holding him together than most of us (well, me anyway!). I can't imagine letting someone pound the crap out of me after what I've been through!!

    3 level spinal fusion, L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1, November 2008. Stiff, but I can walk.
  • Oh, I couldn't agree more Linda. Is this the second fusion for him? I thought I read he had one a while back but then again I could be confusing him with another UFC fighter.
  • John Cena wwf fighter had a fusion dun on his neck and returned to the ring 6 months later and is still fighting, he may pay for it later.
  • Nice to see you on the board. How is your recovery coming along?

    Details, please....
  • He is still fighting! Matter of fact, he is fighting again ffor the first time since his surgery on the 21st of this month. I have the same sentiment regarding possible damage to other parts of his spine. Interesting though is the "lateral" approach which doesn't disturb the already pissed off nerves during surgery.
  • that he mentions on his site. Nate Quarry is his name. I believe this is his first surgery.
  • It's moving along. My right leg is gaining strength and getting better, but my left leg is still bothering me some. It's still awful early yet, though. Although my left leg felt better after surgery; it has regressed some, but not like it was pre surgery. That's encouraging. :)

    I have to try and not do "too much" or I'll pay for it. Know what I mean?

    Hope you are feeling better Gwen.
  • My husband loves UFC and I usually can't stand to watch it... but now I'm going to watch it just to see this guy who had a fusion surgery! I personally think he's nuts for fighting afterward, but to each their own....
  • how well he does and for how long.

    Stay ahead of the pain with your meds, Noseovertail. The worst is over for you, I hope.
  • This is my opinion... Tito is either in major debt or a complete idiot to be fighting after a fusion. The pain I have been in myself... if I ever got to a point where I felt better, I sure wouldn't not be stepping into the ring. I would wrap myself in bubble wrap and thank my lucky stars for my pain relief.

    I can't believe he would risk hurting his back again. He must be smoking crack!
  • Ha, I was just looking at this post while watching Monday night football and just saw the ad.

    He is crazy!!! All I can think is he has not been in the pain that most of us are. Who knows, you have to be pretty hard core to do what he does in the first place. I will be rooting for Tito all the way and hope the best for him.

  • I can't even lift my leg to put my pants on much less kick somebody in the face.
  • Tito must need the money and I think some of his falling out with Dana White had to do with his injury that he claimed (and I totally believe) happened while "on the job."

    I don't think Tito realizes the concept of "adjacent disc degeneration", but if he does, he is risking a lot.

    Paul,..I think in any sport there is a certain "lifespan" that can be expected. I think a fusion surgery definitely is a strong indicator that the time has come. Some of the contorted positions these fighters get themselves in is amazing, but risk of injury is huge even being in tip top shape. I wish Tito the best.
  • and see if his movement is impaired or not. I really think he is risking a normal life (physically speaking) down the road by continuing to compete. We shall see.
  • I always liked to see him fight but it would be time to give it up for myself. Maybe Jenna's running through more money than they can bring in. I don't know how much pain he was in but there is no way I would risk it again.
  • Nate had the NuVasive procedure.
    Good luck to Tito, I think Forrest might take it tho.

    Most fighters do not have any knowledge of the lumbar spine.

    In Brazilian jiu-jitsu, as well as other fighting, a "double leg take-down" is often used.
    The person being taken down lands with tremendous force on their rear end. Their lumbar discs absorb all of the shock.

    I used to train at the Gracie academy in Torrance, CA when UFC was in it's infancy. They had an upstairs training room where a giant green soft mat covered most of the floor. When someone was taken down, the room/building would "boom" very loudly.

    It was there one Saturday morning when my lower back pain caught up with me and I finally "threw in the towel" with my fighting endevours. I had another student in my "gaurd" while I was applying a "lapel" choke.
    I actually had him close to blacking out as he was trying to escape it, but had to let it go because I could not stand the pain coming from my lower back.
    I haven't faught since. :(
    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • I read this post about Tito and then thought I wasn't hearing or seeing correctly when I saw the advertisement for the fight on Tv for today -- had to scratch my head over this one.

    He MUST be getting lots of money to risk blowing out his back for life.

  • I didn't realize his surgery was on October 6th. That's barely a month ago! Crazy.
  • Im watching Ortiz right now. I hope his back doesn't break!
  • Tito Ortiz hung in the full fight, but lost in decision (actually lost pretty badly). Commentators said "he just wasn't in full condition".
    On the comment on MMA salaries - its really more abbout status and endorsements, they actually don't get that much money per fight - UFC ownder Dana White is making the $$$. These fighters get about 10K-18K for lose and about 40K for a win, unless they win the bonus for fight of the night.
  • I got to catch the fight tonight and was impressed...yes his endurance waned, but holy cow he came out swinging! I'm thinking he may just be getting started, I guess only time will tell. Physically he looked great, you'd never know that he'd had a fusion walking down the street.
  • October of '08 that he had surgery. You couldn't really tell he'd had back surgery, huh? Amazing what atheletes can do.
  • after the fight regarding his back...

    "Ortiz said he came into the fight unable to spar much at all due to a bulging disc in his back -- yes, the same back he just had repaired. The crowd booed, as they usually do when losing fighters discuss the injuries they bring into the cage.

    All in all, Ortiz still has some questions to answer regarding the durability of his back, especially if he's still dealing with bulging discs. After an 18-month layoff, it's hard to fault the guy too much for gassing in Round 3, but it's also fair to point out that he needs to correct that problem if he's going to keep fighting at this level."


    I questioned his return after a fusion and wondered how the other discs would hold up under such competetive strain. Looks like I got my answer.

    It's probably time to hang 'em up and live a normal life, while he still can do so.

  • You got that right. He gave it a decent shot but he was obviously not at his pre-injury self.

    I would like to see anyone booing try to get out there and do what Tito did.
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