Paul Holmes off life support


Veteran broadcaster Paul Holmes is off life support and sitting up in bed following open-heart surgery last week.

A team of surgeons worked for four hours on Wednesday to remove a blockage and carry out remedial work on his heart.

Holmes was placed in an induced coma on Friday to quicken recovery.

In a statement released on behalf of Holmes and his wife Deborah, Newstalk ZB this morning said he was now awake and off life-support.

He is expected to leave the intensive care unit today, and is described as in a stable condition.

The 62-year-old was diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a usually genetic condition in which the heart muscle thickens and impedes and blocks blood flow. It affects about one in 1000 people.

Before the operation Holmes admitted feeling anxious and ``a bit scared'' but he and his wife were buoyed by good wishes from family and supporters.

He said he had been feeling breathless and lacking energy for about a month, which he thought were a result of being rundown after finishing writing a book.

When his condition was confirmed by his Hastings cardiologist Richard Luke, Holmes was flown to Auckland on May 30.

He has been positive about his long-term prognosis, including a return to work as a Newstalk ZB and TVNZ host and Weekend Herald columnist, saying he had confidence in the surgeons.

Holmes has survived a road accident, a helicopter crash and cancer.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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