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by Shane Stokes
November 18, 2015
Photography by Cor Vos
Spanish rider José Joaquín Rojas will undergo a heart procedure on Wednesday to address an issue discovered last week by the team’s medical staff.
The staff were carrying out the usual pre-season checks and picked up the problem. Rojas explained the issue.
“They detected it in the electro cardiogram and ultrasound of the heart that is carried out each year. It is called Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome,” he stated. “It is something that is no problem for those with a regular life, but it can affect those of us who are highly competitive.”
The condition is one affecting the electrical signals in the heart. It can lead to periods of rapid heart rate, called tachycardia, where the organ beats faster than is required. It is caused by the usual electrical signals following an additional route in the heart, over-stimulating it.
The procedure to correct this will be carried out on Wednesday morning in the hospital of Navarra. “I have been told that they will insert a catheter through my groin and burn the fibres that cause this anomaly,” he said.
His stay in the hospital could end up being brief.
“If there are no complications, the doctors have told me that I can leave the hospital in the afternoon and go home.”
Rojas was Spanish national champion in 2011 and has also taken stages in races such as the Volta a Catalunya, the Vuelta al Pais Vasco and the Vuelta a Castilla y León. The 30 year old sprinter won the opening stage of the Tour of Qatar earlier this year.