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Michael Bisping may need surgery for neck issue

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

NEWARK, NJ -- About six weeks before he was to fight Alan Belcher at UFC 159, Michael Bisping was informed that he should undergo surgery to correct a case of spinal stenosis that has compromised his strength.

Bisping bypassed the procedure, opting to go through with his fight with Belcher, which he won via technical decision.

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"As you saw tonight, I could clearly fight," he said during the event's post-fight press conference. "No one goes in to fight at 100 percent. I'll go home, I'll get it looked at and get it sorted out. I still feel fine. That's just the way it goes. It's a rough business. You take a few bumps and bruises along the way."

Bisping (24-5) said the injury first occurred last year when he was preparing to fight Tim Boetsch, and said it had gotten progressively worse over time. He said it has affected the strength in his right arm.

According to the Mayo Clinic, stenosis in the neck is a narrowing of the spine that can cause numbness, weakness or tingling in a leg, foot, hand or arm. Physical therapy is recommended for mild cases, with surgery saved for those with severe problems.

Bisping did not say if he definitely planned to go through with surgery to fix the problem.

His win moved him to 24-5 while Belcher fell to 18-8.

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