Former VP Cheney has heart surgery

Vice President of the United States (AP)

July 14, 2010 3:38:20 PM PDT
Former Vice President Dick Cheney says he underwent heart surgery last week and is recuperating.

In a statement, Cheney said he had been experiencing increasing congestive heart failure and after consultations with his doctors, he had received an implantable pump to improve heart function. He said the operation went well and he is recuperating.

The 69-year-old Cheney has a long history of heart disease.

Cheney's heart attack earlier this year was his fifth since age 37.

Full Statement

As many of you know, I have dealt with coronary artery disease for decades, suffering my first heart attack in 1978 at age 37. Over the years, excellent care from my doctors and advances in medicine and technology have allowed me to live a full and active life, for which I am very grateful.

A few weeks ago, it became clear that I was entering a new phase of the disease when I began to experience increasing congestive heart failure. After a series of recent tests and discussions with my doctors, I decided to take advantage of one of the new technologies available and have a Left Ventricular Assist Device (LVAD) implanted. The LVAD is a small implantable pump that improves heart function and will enable me to resume an active life.

Last week I underwent surgery at Inova Fairfax Heart and Vascular Institute and had an LVAD implanted. The operation went very well and I am now recuperating.

I am grateful for the wonderful care that I have received over the years at George Washington University Hospital, and that I am currently receiving at Inova Fairfax Heart and Vascular Institute.

I also want to thank all of you who have included my family and me in your thoughts and prayers.


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