Louisiana AC bans breast implants in the cage and ring

Friday, September 13, 2013

While MMA is the most compelling sport in the world, its regulation by State, Provincial, and Tribal athletic commissions can be relatively dry. That is why regulation is so under the radar that promotions like the UFC are often taken to task by fans over judges or refs, when officials are appointed not by the promotion, but by the AC.

However, a first of its kind emergency rule passed on Wed by Louisiana State Boxing and Wrestling Commission is, in keeping with the character of the state, more colorful that most – a six month moratorium was placed on on MMA fighters and boxers who have breast implants.

The Commission passed an emergency rule today prohibiting fighters with breast implants from participating in matches, unless they get clearance from the doctors who performed their plastic surgery.

“If they want to look good, then they don’t have to be in the ring,” said commissioner Harold Williams during a meeting at the Louisiana State Capitol.

The moratorium is in place for at least 60 days, while the commission gathers more information about other states’ regulations of the matter. They are considering placing a blanket ban on fighters with breast implants altogether, or making the affected participants sign a waiver before participating.

A female fighter in the state recently pulled out of a scheduled match because of a problem with her breast implant, said vice chairman Buddy Embanato. He and several other commissioners are concerned about who would be financially responsible if a breast implant ruptured during competition.

Thomas Ferguson, a doctor on the commission, said a ruptured breast implant doesn’t usually pose a serious health risk to the owner, but the required repairs are costly.

“Those redo surgeries are more complicated and expensive,” he said.

The commission didn’t know of any other state that has such a ban in place, though some states require fighters with implants to sign a waiver.

The new rule could have an impact on two or three female fights that have already been scheduled. Embanato said he wasn’t sure if any of the women – outside of the one who has already pulled out of a fight because of problems – had breast implants.

Ferguson thought it was unlikely that a doctor who performed breast augmentations would sign off on a woman fighting.

“I don’t know of a single plastic surgeon who is going to allow his artistic work to be messed up,” he said.

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