Horsford to continue recovery in Las Vegas from major heart surgery

WASHINGTON — Rep. Steven Horsford has returned home to Las Vegas to continue recovering from what his office described Friday as major heart surgery earlier this month.

Horsford, 40, underwent a six-way bypass on July 1 after doctors during a routine physical exam in Washington discovered an undiagnosed “hereditary condition” that required rapid attention.

Horsford, a Democrat and House freshman, said in a statement he expects to make a full recovery.

No timetable has been announced for a return to work. Congress is in session but is scheduled to recess on Aug. 2 and won’t reconvene until Sept. 9.

“It came as quite a surprise to learn of the severity of my undiagnosed heart condition from my doctor,” Horsford said. “I came out of the surgery successfully because of the people who have been by my side.”

Horsford on July 5 was released from the Inova Fairfax Hospital in Fairfax, Va., where his surgery was performed by specialists associated with the Inova Heart & Vascular Institute.

Horsford’s office said Friday he will continue his recovery under the care of cardiac specialists in Las Vegas.

Heart bypass, one of the more commonly performed surgeries, involves removing or redirecting blood vessels to “bypass” blockages in coronary arteries and restore blood flow to the heart.

Dr. Demetri Mavroidis, a heart surgeon at University Medical Center in Las Vegas, agreed to speak generally about the procedure, saying he was unfamiliar with Horford’s situation.

He said from his experience it is not unusual for younger patients to undergo multiple grafts “because their blood vessels are bigger and healthier still and they can take grafts.”

Mavroidis said a six-way bypass generally would involve surgery of about three hours.

“People tend to get hung up on the number of bypasses but really it doesn’t mean that he’s sicker or better than the next guy for having had six,” Mavroidis said. “It just means he had six vessels in his heart that were big enough to help out.”

Contact Stephens Washington Bureau Chief Steve Tetreault at stetreault@stephensmedia.com or 202-783-1760. Follow him on Twitter @STetreaultDC.

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