October 12th, 2007
05:00 PM ET
14 years ago

Kennedy undergoes surgery for blockage

Doctors removed a blockage from Sen. Ted Kennedy's left carotid artery Friday.

BOSTON (CNN) - Doctors removed a blockage from Sen. Ted Kennedy's left carotid artery Friday, and the senator was said to be "fine."

Kennedy's office said the blockage was discovered "as part of a routine evaluation of Senator Kennedy's back and spine."

"MRI studies picked up an unrelated, asymptomatic blockage in the senator's left carotid artery," the office said in a written statement. "This morning, Senator Kennedy underwent preventive surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital to remove the blockage.

"The surgery, which was performed by Doctor Richard Cambria, was routine and successful. After a very brief recovery period, Senator Kennedy will resume his normal schedule in Washington and in Massachusetts."

Kennedy's doctors said they performed a carotid endarterectomy, which involves making a cut in the neck and pulling plaque out of the artery.

Cambria told reporters the surgery was routine and uneventful. He said Kennedy, 75, was resting comfortably and was drinking ginger ale, eating ice cream and looking forward to watching the Red Sox on television Friday night. The senator is expected to make a full recovery.

Typically, Cambria said, blockages are surgically corrected only if the artery is at least 70 percent blocked, and Kennedy's blockage was in that range.

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Filed under: Ted Kennedy
soundoff (94 Responses)


    October 12, 2007 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  2. Brian, Syracuse NY

    May God bless Ted Kennedy and give him a speedy recovery!

    October 12, 2007 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  3. Olathe, KS

    Why doesn't this old log just die or fade away.

    October 12, 2007 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  4. Evan, Milwaukee

    Nice, Olathe. You don't agree with someone's politics so you wish them dead. Very enlightened.

    October 12, 2007 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  5. Phil Chicago Ill

    I wonder what was clogging his artery? A VW bug?

    October 12, 2007 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  6. Anita, Birmingham AL

    May you have a speedy recovery, Senator Kennedy!

    To all the morons who say otherwise, shame on them ... but after all, they are morons and cannot help themselves.

    October 12, 2007 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  7. Don Fitzgerald, Chicago

    Quick recovery is in order, Senator Kennedy, we need your strong liberal leadership in the Senate, as well as in our great nation. Thanks for you tireless leadership all these years, our nation is grateful for yours and other members of your family's commitment.

    October 12, 2007 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  8. Anonymous, Denver, CO

    A True Champion for the Common Man - I wish him a speedy recovery and may he live to bedevil morons like the blogger from Olathe for ANOTHER 75 years!

    October 12, 2007 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  9. Pete, San Diego CA

    While their at it, why don't they remove all that excess lard too?

    October 12, 2007 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  10. Sam

    The artery was blocked by the Chappaquiddick police.

    October 12, 2007 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  11. Marta Akashe, Mundelein IL

    I wouldn't say that Sen. Kennedy was asymptomatic. He introduced some legislations last year that didn't make any sense (eliminating compounding pharmacies etc.) Thank you

    October 12, 2007 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  12. Bobby

    Proof that Excessive amounts of Bathtub Gin does not unblock some all clogged drains.

    October 12, 2007 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  13. Tom, Milwaukee WI

    Most enlightened people would celebrate the demise of Bin Laden... well the damage this man has done to America surpasses Bin Laden many times over...

    I indeed wish him a speedy departure!

    October 12, 2007 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  14. Joey

    What's more dangerous?...hunting with Dick Cheney or driving back from lunch with Ted Kennedy?

    October 12, 2007 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  15. Will, Nyc

    For those of you who criticise Kennedy for chappaquiddick, I assume that you chastise Laura Bush, who also killed her lover in a car accident, right? Right? Thought not. Hypocrites.

    October 12, 2007 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  16. Celene Medford Or

    This man has live in excess and privleage his whole life.
    In some ways he might relate to the common man..
    But he is still a politician, still privelaged and take notice...
    ABLE to get the best in healthcare..While the average over taxed american can NOT..

    October 12, 2007 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  17. john williams san diego, ca.

    the philandering MURDERER cheated death again...the devil must be seething

    October 12, 2007 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  18. Suzi McCulligan

    I wonder why the family of Mary Jo Kopechne do not send their condolences. Haven't they gotten over that dang Chappaquiddick thing yet?...geez!

    October 12, 2007 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  19. Mark Boston MA

    Wow! they finally found the cap to the bottle of vodka he swallowed in 1969!

    October 12, 2007 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  20. Henry Tucker, Ga

    Oh yes... the Kennedy Family is such a great role-model! A role model of arrogance, moral bankruptcy, and the corruption of power – all while living off the teet of the American Taxpayer:

    – Joe Kennedy (father) making millions off boot-legging during prohibition.
    – Chappaquidick (Teddy)
    – JFK – running around the White House with his mistresses
    – Rape on the Kennedy Compound (William Kennedy Smith)
    – DUI (Patrick)

    Yeah – they've given us so much!

    October 12, 2007 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  21. Joe The Bartender, Mass

    Sounds like Al Gore and John Kerry will be looking for a new drinking buddy.

    October 12, 2007 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  22. bill birmingham alabama

    gee, too bad they didn't slip...

    October 12, 2007 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  23. Steve

    "While their at it, why don't they remove all that excess lard too?"

    But Pete – they can't remove fat from your head yet. Maybe science will advance enough to relieve your misery.

    The Haters of America: already in a town near you.

    October 12, 2007 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  24. Johnny, Houston, Tx

    maybe they can have a Kennedy reunion soon.....
    p.s. the blockage was a shot glass

    October 12, 2007 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  25. todd austin, tx

    2 things regarding all of the comments:
    1) Syracuse Brian - Ted Kennedy is not an american treasure..paul revere, george washington, abraham lincoln, douglas macarthur are american treasures...
    2) Will - Laura Bush didn't run from the scene when she was 17, smear the deceased or try and cover it up. Will, you got to learn facts, then know how to make an argument or rationale comparison of those facts...no wonder our country is falling apart, dolts like you actually make statements.

    October 12, 2007 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
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