Mixed martial artist Shane Del Rosario is fighting for his life after suffering sudden cardiac arrest at his home Tuesday morning, his family said Wednesday.
Doctors at Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian in Newport Beach, Calif., modulated Del Rosario's body temperature near 90 degrees Fahrenheit using an Arctic Sun Temperature Management System, in hopes of inducing a therapeutic hypothermia and restarting his body and brain functions.
By 5 p.m. PT doctors began raising the 30-year-old heavyweight's core temperature.
"His body is coming around physically, his organs are slowly coming back online," said Colin Oyama, the fighter's longtime trainer, who texted from the hospital, where he joined members of the Del Rosario family. "Now they are working on getting his brain to kick in. They have begun to raise his core temperature in hopes that his brain will activate after approximately 15-24 hours."
According to a statement released by Del Rosario's family and doctors, he suffered a catastrophic cardiovascular collapse and was brought to the hospital in full cardiac arrest. He was resuscitated in the emergency room back to a stable heart rhythm and blood pressure. He is currently in the coronary care unit, critically ill. "We have a chance, albeit a small one," Oyama said earlier in the day.
Sherdog.com reported late Wednesday that UFC flyweight and roommate Ian McCall found Del Rosario. McCall called 911 and administered CPR to Del Rosario.
Del Rosario was born and raised in Orange County, Calif. After graduating from the University of California, Irvine, he opted for fighting over pursuing an advanced degree. Under Oyama's tutelage, Del Rosario stopped the first 11 fighters he faced in MMA competition before being badly injured in April 2011 when a drunken driver struck his car from behind.
During a 14-month absence, herniated disks prompted contemplation of retirement and returning to school. Del Rosario fought on and entered the UFC in May 2012, only to get stopped by Stipe Miocic. That was followed by a knockout loss last December to Pat Barry.
Del Rosario was scheduled to fight at UFC 168 in Las Vegas in December; however, on Friday the UFC announced that he could not fight Carlos Augusto Filho due to injury. According to Oyama, Del Rosario injured cartilage between his ribs a couple of weeks ago and would be unable to recover in time to fight Dec. 28.