Updated:HARRISBURG, Pa. —
Gov. Tom Corbett had successful hernia surgery in Pittsburgh on Thursday and briefly turned over the reins of power to his lieutenant governor.
Lt. Gov. Jim Cawley was in charge of the state from 7:10 a.m. to 8:35 a.m., when the governor emerged from anesthesia, Corbett's office said. By midmorning, Corbett was on his way home to recover at his home in Shaler, said press secretary Jay Pagni.
"He was in great spirits as he left Allegheny Outpatient Surgical Center,” Pagni said.
Dr. John J. Raves performed the repair of an abdominal hernia, a procedure considered routine. Corbett's office said the surgery was performed with a laparoscope.
“It was a short procedure and when he came out, he was awake within minutes of the surgery. His family joined him shortly thereafter,” Allegheny Health Network Dr. Tony Farah said.
Corbett, 64, has no scheduled events in the coming days and is expected to return to Harrisburg by Monday.
Corbett has lost about 35 pounds since last summer.
The Republican governor had back surgery at the same hospital in May 2011, his first year in office, to address spinal stenosis, a narrowing of the spinal canal that can cause pain and reduce activity. In that case he spent two days at the hospital.
“We’re privileged to have the governor receive his care here at Allegheny General Hospital. In fact, he’s received most of his car here and he’s been very happy with that care,” Farah said.
Corbett also had angioplasty to clear a blocked artery after a mild heart attack in 1997.