Bret Michaels undergoes heart surgery in Phoenix

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by Jennifer Thomas

azfamily.com

Posted on January 24, 2011 at 11:01 AM

Updated Tuesday, Jan 25 at 8:51 AM

PHOENIX -- Singer Bret Michaels successfully underwent heart surgery at St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix on Monday.

Michaels, who lives in Scottsdale, had a procedure to close a hole in his heart.

He's apparently had the problem since birth, but it was only discovered in April when doctors treated him for a brain hemorrhage.

Doctors inserted a catheter into a vein in Michaels' groin with a closure device, and tiny cameras assisted doctors as they operated to close the hole.

The closure device will remain in Michaels' heart permanently to stop abnormal blood flow between the two chambers of the heart, which is thought to have caused the warning stoke he suffered.

Without treatment, doctors said Michaels could have been at risk for developing blood clots and an additional stroke.

Michaels, a lifelong type 1 diabetic, is currently recuperating in the Intesive Care Unit at St. Joseph's Hospital.

The Poison frontman won "Celebrity Apprentice 3" and starred in the VH1 reality show "Bret Michaels: Life As I Know It."  

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