UFC President Dana White's battle with Meniere's disease has been chronicled over the past year as he's attempted everything under the sun to combat the crippling disorder.
Meniere's disease is an inner ear disorder that can cause "spontaneous episodes of vertigo" or a spinning sensation as well as hearing loss, pressure in the ear and a ringing sound that can sometimes last for hours at a time, according to the Mayo Clinic.
For the first time since he became a part of the UFC more than ten years ago, White had to miss an event due to the debilitating disease in 2012. He underwent surgery that can help relieve most of the symptoms earlier this year, but commented weeks later that the procedure was not effective and he was still dealing with the disease.
It's good to have friends in high places however, as White found out recently when New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez gave him a call to offer a helping hand.
It involved a trip to Germany for a procedure called Orthokine which Rodriguez underwent, as did Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant.
"A-Rod, A-Rod hooked me up with this stuff. A-Rod hurt his knee and back and Kobe Bryant called him and Kobe Bryant said you need to go to this place in Germany," White recounted when speaking at the UFC on Fox 7 media day. "That's what he did when his knee was like bone on bone. He said it's a miracle, it's unbelievable. So A-Rod told me I know you're going through this stuff, I don't know if it's going to help you, but you should try it. Worst case scenario it doesn't work."
The procedure is essentially where a patient's blood is "extracted, manipulated, and then reintroduced to the body as an anti-inflammatory drug." The resulting liquid extracted from the blood is then injected back into the affected area on a couple of occasions to relieve stress and pressure. Typically the procedure is done for joint injuries in areas like the knee or shoulder.
It's become a popular procedure among celebrities and athletes, with names like Rodriguez and Bryant seeking out the treatment as well as actor George Clooney, who White says had the treatment to help an ailing shoulder injury.
"I got the shot on a Sunday 3:30 in the afternoon in Germany, I flew home, I got home late Sunday night," White explained. "Had to get up Monday morning to fly to Stanford, had to speak at Stanford Business School. Flew back home and was in the office for a while, I woke up Tuesday—I felt like Superman. I almost flew to work."
White now believes his Meniere's disease is completely cured, although he will have to go back to Germany for a second injection in about three months time. After that, White says he doesn't expect to have to undergo any further procedures for the treatment.
The UFC's head honcho was ecstatic talking about his improvement after dealing with the crippling disease for the last couple years of his life, and now he's happier, healthier and feeling better than ever.
Damon Martin is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report and all quotes were obtained first hand unless otherwise noted.
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