UFC fighter Josiah Harrell to undergo costly brain surgery for Moyamoya

UFC fighter Josiah Harrell needs nearly six figures for a potentially life-saving surgery.

Harrell, 24, has yet to compete in the promotion. His short notice debut at UFC 290 in July was scrapped days before the fight when his pre-fight medical tests revealed Moyamoya, a rare brain disease that impacts blood flow.

With the disease rare, and such few facilities offering the procedure, Harrell has spent the past four months planning for surgery. His surgery is currently scheduled for Tuesday at the Moyamoya Center at Stanford Health Care (Palo Alto, Calif.), his manager Maurice Blanco, of First Round Management, told MMA Junkie on Monday.

Blanco added that Harrell is in relatively good spirits with a morning run scheduled for just hours before his procedure. The expected recovery time before resumption of training is three to four months, Blanco said, though an exact timeline will be more mappable post-surgery.

Harrell recently set up a GoFundMe account to help absorb the hefty costs. The fundraiser has a $80,000 goal and states the UFC’s insurance does not cover the procedure.

As rare as Moyamoya disease is, there is a near-identical instance of another fighter who was removed from his UFC debut upon its discovery. In 2019, Vince Murdock was flagged for Moyamoya. He underwent brain surgery and returned to competition in 2020.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie