Real Madrid defender Dani Carvajal is focusing his attention towards a return for the Spanish capital derby against Atletico Madrid later this month, however there is still a ring of uncertainty surrounding the right-back's come back.
The 25-year-old has not featured for Los Blancos since their 3-1 Champions League win in Borussia Dortmund during September after being diagnosed with pericarditis.
However, the Spain international is said to be in the final stages of his rehabilitation period, with the hope he will be able to feature once again during the Madrid derby, but there is still potential of a further lay off.
"His training should be very little by little, in a very progressive way", Dr. Cesar Quesada, from the FIFA Ripoll Excellence Clinic and De Prado Sport Clinic, told Spanish news outlet Marca.
"The average athlete is 4-6 weeks off, but if there is a relapse rate, I imagine that they will have extended the window of his return to have more guarantees that everything is perfect.
"Some alterations in the electrocardiogram of the elite athlete can persist, even when the disease is over, so only the experience of the cardiologist and the successive complementary tests requested from the athlete can allow us to discharge him completely for strenuous physical activity.
"High performance levels are a gigantic stress and it's true that they are used to it, but after several weeks doing nothing the normal thing is that it costs you at the beginning.
"There is a relatively high relapse rate, between 15 and 20 percent. Therefore, it is the cardiologist who should determine the steps to be followed later by the athlete, always under the parameters of a very progressive and always asymptomatic reincorporation."
Despite the uncertainty surrounding the date of Carvajal's return, one thing that is for sure is that it will take time for the right-back to reach the levels he played at previously.
"It is a return to normal after a period without training for a month, where the rest should be absolute, and obviously will affect the time to get back in shape again", Dr. Quesada added.
"You also have to find your confidence again.
"With the heart, there are people who are more apprehensive than others, but Carvajal must be calm.
"Once he's discharged, he won't require further follow-up."
At this present moment, Madrid currently find themselves without seven first-team players as they aim to close the gap to La Liga leaders Barcelona following the international break, with Mateo Kovacic, Keylor Navas, Toni Kroos, Isco, Jesus Vallejo and Gareth Bale all currently unavailable.