Rafael Nadal has conceded that he may have to undergo surgery at the end of the year after being diagnosed with appendicitis.
Initially complaining of stomach pains on Sunday, doctors confirmed the world number two had the condition and was given antibiotics before his Shanghai Masters second round match with Feliciano Lopez on Wednesday.
Despite this, he was beaten 6-3 7-6 (8-6) by his fellow Spaniard and is subsequently out of the tournament but Nadal is still looking ahead to the next three tournaments of the year before he goes ahead with surgery.
Speaking to reporters, he said: "When you lose a match, it is not the moment to talk about obvious things. Feli played better than me."
"It's the same way that I felt before. A little bit more dizzy now. But that's it. Nothing that I have to worry about.
"That's it. I talked about that yesterday, so I don't need to talk again about my health.
"Now there remains three more tournaments for me. My thoughts is to continue with Basel, Paris and London."
Nadal has struggled with injuries over his career; most recently, he has just recovered from a wrist injury which forced him to miss the US Open and only recently returned for the China Open - the first time he has played since his shock defeat to Nick Kyrgios in the fourth round at Wimbledon - and the Spaniard admits it has been frustrating to be sidelined after a good start to the year.
"I didn't have the best of luck since Wimbledon," he said.
"I was playing a good year, a very positive year. After that I was unlucky with the wrist, what's going on now. Obviously the last couple of months have been a little bit hard for me."
Although it seems unlikely that Nadal will choose to have surgery earlier, should he choose to do so before the end of 2014, it could significantly boost current world number nine Andy Murray's chances of playing at the World Tour Finals next month.
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