Mario Cipollini is recovering from a second operation to correct a heart rhythm disorder, according to a report in La Gazzetta dello Sport. Cipollini said the operation was planned at a hospital in Ancona to check the effects of an initial operation that he had in October last year.
"The second operation was therefore planned. Don't worry," Cipollini told La Gazzetta dello Sport, but he also indicated before the second operation that he is still having trouble with his heart.
"I felt vulnerable. But compared to people who are really sick, I have nothing. I have to change my way of life, after all, you only have one heart."
Cipollini revealed last November that he suffered from a serious heart condition and had to undergo surgery.
He underwent heart surgery for five hours in late October to treat a myocardial bridge – a condition where the heart muscle grows around the coronary artery and constricts blood flow.
He also had an ablation in his right ventricle to resolve an arrhythmia and a biopsy that confirmed he had suffered from a viral infection that affected his heart and caused myocarditis or inflammation of the heart tissue.
After his second operation, Cipollini said that he will need to take two weeks to recover and then hopes to be riding his bike again by the end of March.
"Now I have to take two weeks of absolute rest, and from the end of March I can cycle again," he said.