R-Truth details infection he dealt with while sidelined, thought he might not wrestle again

Photo Courtesy: WWE

Truth speaks candidly about his recovery. 

In November 2022 while R-Truth was working dates for WWE’s NXT brand, he suffered a quad tendon tear. Several months later, he provided an update and shared that he had to undergo a second surgery due to an infection. 

Truth made his return to television at the 2023 Survivor Series. He documented his road to recovery while speaking to Peter Rosenberg on The Ringer Wrestling Show. There was a period of time when Truth thought he might not be able to wrestle again. 

He had to undergo the second surgery because he contracted an infection and there were five different bacteria that caused the infection. He named MRSA and staph as two of the five. There was an extensive process to get it under control. His doctor told him that one of his options was amputation. Truth said being told that was a big reality check. 

Yes, there was a period (when I thought I might not be able to wrestle again). I mean, I had a hole in my knee. A hole. I had five different bacteria that caused an infection, along with MRSA, staph and they cousins and kinfolks.

It started off as a routine quad tear. As a matter of fact, I tore my bottom quad and they went in and I guess it could have happened during surgery. But I went to get the stitches out and that’s when we found out the bacteria, the infection was eating from the inside out so that’s where the hole came from and I just remember the doctor would never give me a high five… He said, ‘Well, we gotta get this under control. If we can’t get this under control, we’ll have to think of other options…’ He was straight shooting with me. ‘You’re in the woods big time. We have to get this under control.’ It wouldn’t heal. It would not heal. So then I had to go three months — I had to have a wound VAC. I don’t know if you ever heard of that before. I’d never heard of it. It was a V.A.C. that was on my knee that kept sucking — I don’t know if that’s P.G. (he joked). It kept sucking the old blood up and putting in the new blood and all that stuff. I had to wear that for six weeks and along with a P.I.C.C. line. I don’t know if you ever heard of that before… So I had to have that for eight weeks. Did that and once all that was over with, the stitches started coming out on their own. So I had stitches coming through my knee, out by themselves. So my body wasn’t agreeing to them, so I had to go back into surgery for a third time. Third surgery and the infection was still there. So I had to get another P.I.C.C. line as well. So man, it was just a good four months, five months of just trying to take care of the infection, slow it down, stop it, not go mentally crazy because there was a chance, he said, the other option was amputation. So to go from doing the (WWE) 24/7 stuff. I was running around, doing things with my kids, to NXT, me and Grayson Waller tearing it down, doing things to stopping and then getting told this, it was a big reality check. It was a pump the breaks moment. 

Following up on that, Truth was asked how he was able to maintain a positive mindset. He understood that if the worst-case scenario came to fruition, it’d be a big life adjustment but life moves forward. 

I think just the initial shock of reality keeps you calm because it’s almost surreal to you. It’s almost, wow, and my mind is replaying everything that I’ve done in my career, my years, my life. From being on stage rapping to in the ring to training. Anything and everything I’ve done to that point was replayed in my mind. So I think just being humble all these years kept me calm. Having faith kept me calm. Having my family around kept me calm. I was getting calls from different people. That kept me calm and just me knowing, okay, it’d be a big adjustment, big change but life has to go on. It’s just a lot of things I had to juggle, deal with, accept, swallow and keep it moving.

The former NWA World Heavyweight Champion does not think there is much left for him to achieve in wrestling. He mentioned that he would like to have a title match at a WrestleMania. 

Not really (is there anything left for me to do in wrestling). R-Truth just kind of takes it as it comes, and other than having that title match at a WrestleMania and performing at WrestleMania, all in one night, my check-off list, I check ‘em off as they get thrown at me… I’ve never had a singles WrestleMania match…

Present day, Truth is regularly featured on television in a storyline with The Judgment Day (Finn Bálor, Rhea Ripley, Damian Priest, Dominik Mysterio & J.D. McDonagh). 

Truth and The Miz fell in defeat to Bálor and Priest on the 1/15 Monday Night Raw

If the quotes in this article are used, please credit The Ringer Wrestling Show with an H/T to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.

About Andrew Thompson 8789 Articles
A Washington D.C. native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.