The 38-year-old Brazilian fighter was competing at MMA event Bellator 158 at London's O2 Arena over the weekend when a brutal blow to the head from fellow fighter Michael Page was dealt with such ferocity that it effectively caved his skull in.
Justino - Cyborg's ex-wife, uploaded the following selfie of him, complete with x-ray, showing the full horrific extent of the damage:
Bellator commentator Jimmy Smith tweeted this about the injury:
If you have a particularly ghoulish appetite for gore, one MMA FAN uploaded footage from the fight where you can actually HEAR the sickening audio of the moment his skull is cracked by the other fighter's knee.
WARNING: VERY GRAPHIC - WATCH AT YOUR OWN PERIL - NOT FOR THE WEAK-STOMACHED
Michael Page brutal finish vs Cyborg. Listen to that impact pic.twitter.com/qEtV19yM30
— KO KINGS (@KOKINGS4) July 17, 2016
Santos was rushed from the arena following the horrific knockout, where he is currently recuperating.
"I spoke with him yesterday," Justino told TMZ. "He doesn't have any problems. He talks normal and he feels the pain a little bit but he's got medicine and they give him pills and he's okay."
The President of Bellator, Scott Coker, has said that they will cover all of Santos's medical bills and a GoFundMe page set up by Justino to raise funds for Santos has also already surpassed it's target of $20,000. This is lucky, as the medical bills are likely to be extensive - with Santos planning to fly out to the United States to undergo surgery on his skull.
"It's no simple injury," Justino told TMZ. "You know you have to put a plate there [gestures at forehead] and you have to wait until your bone covers the plate before you can start back training."
"In the beginning everybody was scared about it because you don't see this injury all the time [but] we said that God saved him and he's really good now."
In spite of the extensive damage though, it seems that Santos is in no way deterred from the dangerous sport, as Justino explained to TMZ: "You can see his head is not okay but he's so funny because he says, 'aw I can fight in three months!' I said, "no man, you cannot fight in three months!"
Santos confirmed the news himself too, speaking directly to MMA Fighting from hospital he said, "I’ll be back soon."