Dani Pedrosa, Stefan Bradl have surgery


Honda riders Stefan Bradl and Dani Pedrosa both underwent surgery this week to correct problems with arm pump.

Arm pump (also known as compartment syndrome) occurs when blood flows into overworked forearm muscles, but doesn’t flow out quickly enough, causing the forearms to swell, become rock-hard, and resulting in all sorts of pain. Arm pump can make it virtually impossible to grip handlebars and levers, and can drastically reduce nerve feedback, making control very tricky.

It’s especially common with motocrossers, but not unheard of in roadracing either. Back in 2012, Casey Stoner blamed it for a third-place finish in Qatar. Bradl had surgery for arm pump in 2012 as well.

Both Bradl and Pedrosa were suffering in their right forearm, and by all accounts, both procedures went well, meaning both riders should be ready for the Le Mans round.


  1. Surgery to treat arm pump will not kill you, it’s a simple procedure. Operating a motorcycle at high speeds and not being able to feel your hands will eventually kill you.

  2. I understand that these guys are racing at the top of the game, with the highest levels of skill and effort, but I have to wonder: Do we want to see competition so fierce that the racers are willing to undergo surgical alteration to be competitive?

    We’ve seen this mentality in the Olympics and bicycle racing with all the doping going on. Athletes are dropping dead a few years after they end their competition careers (Look at all the “pro wrestlers” with steroid issues), so it’s possible that they are actually shortening their lives by these actions. In this case, we have riders getting surgery to alter the circulation in their forearms: What will be the long term effects?

    The pressure to win is the highest at the highest levels of the sport, but when it leads to racers taking risks with their own long term health then it’s time to back off a bit, IMHO.

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