Arnold Schwarzenegger's representative gives update after open-heart surgery
I thought The Terminator was indestructible. After all, he survived four disappointing sequels. But it turns out 70-year-old action movie star Arnold Schwarzenegger is mortal after all. The Austrian bodybuilder turned actor turned governor of California suffered a serious health scare. He went to Cedars-Sinai Hospital for a catheter valve replacement, which is a minimally invasive procedure. However, issues arose, requiring emergency open-heart surgery.
Schwarzenegger was born with bicuspid aortic valve, which means that instead of the normal three leaflets, his valve has only two. The actor previously underwent elective heart surgery in 1997, the same year he starred in the hilarious disaster of a film, Batman & Robin. (As Mr. Freeze, he enthusiastically delivered pun-tastic lines such as "Let's kick some ice" and "Cool party.") At the time, doctors suggested Schwarzenegger get a mechanical aortic valve replacement, as it would be the only permanent solution. However, the actor opted not to, as it would have restricted his physical activity and intense fitness regime. Instead, he got a valve made out of tissue.
Following that 1997 surgery, Schwarzenegger said, "I've never felt sick or had any symptoms at all, but I knew I'd have to take care of this condition sooner or later. I said to the doctors, 'Let's do it now, while I'm young and healthy.' They agreed this was the way to go." In 2016, the actor reflected on that procedure in an interview, and said, "Now, 19 years later I still have the same valves and everything is standing fine." But of course, that surgery was only a temporary solution. Now time has taken its toll.
However, after this week's emergency open-heart surgery, the actor is in stable condition and appears to be making a full recovery. His spokesman, Daniel Ketchell, released an official statement on Twitter, revealing that the pulmonic valve was successfully replaced. It's only a matter of time before he can "get to the chopper."
Less than an hour later Ketchell tweeted an update, letting fans know that "Schwarzenegger is awake and his first words were actually “I’m back”, so he is in good spirits." That Terminator 2 quote is perfect. I hope when the surgeons came in to greet Arnold, they said a Schwarzenegger-esque line, like, "It's SEW nice to meet you." Or "Glad you CUT a break." Or "I see you've had a CHANGE OF HEART." (Sorry. I love Schwarzenegger movies.)
Well, it's great to hear the actor is awake and in good spirits. In one of his last interviews before the health scare, he told the Australian TV show The Project that he felt young for his age: "I don't even think that I'm 70, I know I'm 70, but so what?," said Schwarzenegger "It's only on my passport or my driver's license, but I feel the same way as I did 20 years ago. I feel good about myself. I work out. I make my movies. Life is great. I feel useful and productive."
Hopefully we'll see him back on the big screen soon. If any doctors are reading this, remember, he eats Green Berets for breakfast, and right now, he's very hungry.