COMBI: "RIVAS TESTS REASSURING"

"Tests need to be completed, but he's a lot calmer now. False diagnosis on TV"

APPIANO GENTILE - In Friday's news conference Inter's chief of medical staff Franco Combi answered questions about the condition of Nelson Rivas, who lost consciousness during last Saturday's training session:

Professor Combi: how is Nelson Rivas?
"He's fine. The tests carried out up to now are reassuring. He now has to finish them off because as you know, Italian law is very severe. It's then up to the competent authorities to look at the tests. But we're doing well, very well."

Is there a bit of apprehension over his condition?
"It was you (journalists) who created the apprehension. We have carried out the tests to check there are no big problems."

So at this point are you denying a very precise and accurate diagnosis that has been circulated?
"It depends on who made the diagnosis... The doctors who have been following him can't have made it because the tests are fine."

What do you think Rivas might have, or what do you think he might have had?
"The tests still need to be completed, but I think it was quite simply a fairly significant dystonia. A dystonia like for example what can happen to soldiers on parade. I think it's this. But as I just said, let's finish off the tests first."

What are the recovery times?
"We have to complete the tests first. Recovery time will be decided by the competent authorities, as foreseen by Italian law. It will then be a progressive recovery because he has been out for a while."

Does this mean the player will have to retake his fitness test?
"No, this is not true. He has his fitness certificate. The regional health authorities will look at the tests and decide what to do."

But could this dystonia be career-threatening for the player?
"Who ever said this?"

In which direction are the tests orientated?
"The tests have been performed to understand why Rivas had this problem. For me, it's lypothymia, and lypothymia means just a blackout. We have completed the neurological tests now, and they're fine. We just need to finish off the small tests. I don't know what the journalists said on TV. And in any case no doctor who has seen Rivas can have said anything different because it wouldn't be true."

There has been talk of congenital arrhythmia...
"The doctors who have seen him certainly can't have said that!"

So can we say that nothing can be excluded for the moment?
"I have only said that it's nothing serious. The diagnosis is not what was said on television. There's no serious pathology and there's nothing to worry about. We have to complete the tests now."

How many days do you need to complete the tests?
"I don't know. We still have to see. There's no big risk for the player but it's right to complete the tests and do them calmly without putting too much pressure on him, because he was the first person to be worried, and he's much, much calmer now."


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