Rafael Lovato Jr Sidelined Indefinitely with Brain Condition

Image via Twitter: @LovatoJrBJJ
Image via Twitter: @LovatoJrBJJ

Bellator Middleweight Champion Rafael Lovato Jr Sidelined Indefinitely with Brain Condition

Rafael Lovato Jr is Bellators Middleweight champion. Recently, he revealed that his fighting career is in danger due to a brain condition. Due to the nature of the condition, Lovato is unsure when if he will be able to return to the sport of mixed martial arts.

Explaining Cavernoma

Rafael was diagnosed with cavernoma. Here is a brief description of what cavernoma is according to John Hopkins Medicine:

“A cavernous malformation (CM) is an abnormal cluster of capillaries and venules (tiny blood vessels) that periodically bleed and give rise to a “popcorn-like” lesion in the brain or spinal cord with very thin walls that contain (the) blood of different ages. CMs are also known as cavernomas, cavernous angiomas, cavernous hemangiomas or capillary hemangiomas.

CMs can be hereditary, which means that they have been passed from the parents to their children.”

Lovato Explains Condition and Fight Future

Lovato quite possibly would have never found the issues with his brain. For the duration of his MMA career, a brain scan was never required to fight. However, last summer he was required to get one in order to face Gegard Mousasi at Bellator 223. Rafael spoke with Joe Rogan on his podcast to explain the condition.


“There is no studies that say getting hit in your head is going to make your cavernoma worse or cause you to bleed and something is going to happen,” said Lovato.

Trying to Fight Again

He continued by relaying the doctor’s orders about the condition. Explaining how in the past he was able to fight, but he wouldn’t get approved again in the future. So, until that moment, he is on the sidelines until he can return. His plan is to continue to collect opinions from medical experts around the country. Then, he’ll make his case as to why he should be able to fight once more.

Published on January 30, 2020 at 5:32 am
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