Embattled Sen. Mike Duffy recovering after undergoing open-heart surgery

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Senator Mike Duffy. FILE PHOTO

OTTAWA — Sen. Mike Duffy is recovering in an Ottawa hospital from open-heart surgery, the second such operation he’s had to clear up blocked arteries.

Dr. Marc Ruel, chief of the cardiac unit at the University of Ottawa’s Heart Institute, conducted the procedure, which began at 6 a.m. Tuesday.

Ruel treated the former broadcaster in 2006 for a similar heart problem. Duffy also suffered a minor heart attack in 1992.

Andree Dumulon, a spokeswoman for the institute, relayed a message from Duffy’s wife Heather, saying, “the surgery went well and ... he is now resting in recovery.”

Duffy was suspended from the upper chamber last month as part of an ongoing controversy over disputed living expenses. Just weeks before, he took sick leave from the Senate, citing his heart condition.

“At the end of August this year I suffered unstable angina at home on P.E.I., and spent 2.5 days in the Queen Elizabeth Hospital,” Duffy wrote in a press release.

“On examination here this week, my Ottawa GP fears the disease has progressed.”

Unstable angina refers to chest pains caused by improper blood flow to the heart, and can be a precursor to a full-blown heart attack.

Doctor-ordered scans revealed several blockages in his arteries.

Duffy is the subject of an RCMP investigation into his living expenses and the subsequent repayment of $90,000 in claims. The Mounties are probing an alleged deal with the prime minister’s chief of staff to have a third party reimburse Duffy the cost of the repayment, as long as certain conditions were met.

One of those conditions was that his repayment would put an effective end to an independent audit into his expenses.

No charges have been laid.

That controversy continues to monopolize both Commons and Senate business. As Duffy lay in hospital Tuesday, the Senate was debating a motion that would call a partner from the firm Deloitte to answer questions about alleged interference into the audit.

Duffy took to the Senate floor in October on two occasions to fight back against his suspension, alleging he was the victim of threats and coercion by the prime minister’s staff and key senators.



Organizations: University of Ottawa, Heart Institute, Queen Elizabeth Hospital RCMP

Geographic location: OTTAWA, Andree

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Recent comments

  • Hardy Hale
    December 04, 2013 - 14:01

    They found one then? Just kidding Mike. All the best and get well soon (and don't read this stuff!).

  • Mike O'Neil
    December 04, 2013 - 08:34

    Hey folks, why not focus on the "story" - it's either "PEI Senator undergoes 2nd heart surgery" or it's "Duffy Under Investigation". We already know the 2nd one - how about giving some space and let the man (and family) recover?

  • What's a real story?
    December 04, 2013 - 07:57

    The Schulich Heart Centre alone performs over 7,000 procedures and more than 80,000 tests a year. There are over a thousand minimally invasive procedures done every day in Canada. If this procedure is really a story, why aren't we reading about similar procedures done on other criminals?

  • Joe
    December 03, 2013 - 20:17

    "...at home on P.E.I., and spent 2.5 days in the Queen Elizabeth Hospital,” please! There's a 'stretch' of the truth. What an embarassment to true Islanders.

  • Sandra Boswell
    December 03, 2013 - 20:12

    The money has been paid to taxpayers. Media need to get on with another story. I am sure this lapse of bad judgements did not do Sen. Duffy any good. We people are sick we don't kick them when they're down. He is a man and we should leave him alone and allow him to recover. In the end we all pay for wrong/selfish decisions and in due time we get what we deserve. In the end God is our judge. Let's get over it.

    December 03, 2013 - 19:33

    Can we forget the ****** money for now and think of the man, Mr. Duffy is a brother of all of us, now recovering from heart surgery and we wish him well, a speedy recovery, good health and blessings.