Schwarzenegger has operation on his leg

From the Associated Press

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger underwent surgery Saturday to remove a metal plate and cables from his right leg, a spokesman said.

The hardware was used to help Schwarzenegger’s upper thigh bone heal after he broke it Dec. 23 while skiing with his family in Sun Valley, Idaho.

The orthopedic surgeon who performed the 20-minute surgery at a Los Angeles hospital said in a statement issued by the governor’s office that there were no complications.


Dr. Kevin Ehrhart said removing the hardware was standard practice after the leg has fully healed. Ehrhart said the second-term Republican governor would use a crutch for several days. Schwarzenegger left the hospital Saturday afternoon to return to his Santa Monica home, his spokesman Aaron McLear said.

McLear said the governor turned over power to Lt. Gov. John Garamendi for 90 minutes during what he described as “minor surgery.”

McLear would not disclose the name of the hospital, citing “privacy reasons.”

Ehrhart, in his statement, said the governor “has fully recovered from his initial surgery in December and removing the hardware is a standard practice.”

Ehrhart also performed the surgery Dec. 26 when the plate and cable were inserted. That surgery lasted 90 minutes, Ehrhart said at the time.

Schwarzenegger walked with crutches and a cane for weeks afterward, but he was able to attend his inauguration the following week.

Last year, the governor blamed an artificial hip installed about six years ago for contributing to what he described as an odd, slow-speed accident. His ski failed to release from its binding, twisting his leg until it snapped, Schwarzenegger said.

Schwarzenegger is anticipating a return to skiing.

“He’s cleared to ski. He’s able to ski and I’ve heard him say he hopes to get out and hit the slopes this winter,” McLear said. “But I don’t know if he has any concrete plans to do so.”