Tech 3 Yamaha rider Cal Crutchlow had surgery on Thursday to cure an arm pump issue ahead of the next MotoGP round.
With the postponement of the Japanese Grand Prix creating a long break between the Jerez and Estoril races, Crutchlow took advantage of the gap to undergo the routine procedure in Italy.
"Since the start of the year I've had a problem with my arm muscles and nerves and my hand went numb when I was riding," he explained. "It started in Sepang in testing and it occurs each time I ride the bike. Therefore we decided to do this operation to solve the issue, so I can be in 100 percent physical condition for the rest of the season.
"At the moment I can't feel two of my fingers, but the doctor said that is completely normal and that the feeling will come back very soon. They had to move the muscles from the nerves as the muscle was trapping the nerves and that's why I was losing feeling in my hand and arm.
"The doctors said that in 12 days the stitches will come off and I will be able to ride in Portugal, so I'm really looking forward to riding the bike without the problem with my arm."
Tech 3 boss Herve Poncharal backed Crutchlow's decision to go ahead with the operation.
"To have surgery once the season has started is always a worry, but I think Cal made the right decision as we have this long break now before the next race in Portugal," he said. "If he didn't have the operation the problem could get bigger and bigger, and you need to be at 100 percent to ride in MotoGP and be competitive."
Crutchlow has made a strong start to his MotoGP career, qualifying in the top 10 for both races so far in his rookie year and finishing eighth at Jerez, where he was challenging for the podium in the wet before falling.