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Cape Breton Post - - NATIONAL - BY MICHAEL MACDON­ALD

typ­i­cally takes about six to eight weeks be­cause more time is needed for bones to heal.

Wil­liams has said his doc­tors told him he would only be of­fered full or par­tial ster­notomies.

“The big pri­or­ity for me, to be quite hon­est with you, was get some­thing done that would get me back to work as soon as pos­si­ble, given the im­por­tance of the spring in any fis­cal cal­en­dar for any gov­ern­ment,” he said Mon­day.

“It was in­di­cated to me that I would’ve had to get the par­tial ster­notomy in Canada ... I then chose to go to the Mi­ami route on the ba­sis that I could get min­i­mally in­va­sive, get in and out quick, get it re­paired quick.”

Jean­mart said he was sur­prised to hear that ad­vice.

“I guess that it’s some­body who didn’t have any con­tact with the (Cana­dian) sur­geons who are do­ing th­ese pro­ce­dures,” he said. “We are among the leaders in many fields of surgery, es­pe­cially in car­diac surgery.”

Jean­mart said he wasn’t aware of the de­tails of Wil­liams’s case, but he said he couldn’t see an ob­vi­ous rea­son why the premier couldn’t have the surgery at his hospi­tal, where the pro­ce­dure has been of­fered since 2006.

“Most pa­tients who present with mi­tral valve leak­age ... are candidates for min­i­mally in­va­sive ap­proach,” he said, adding that the two cen­tres in Montreal are typ­i­cally com­plet­ing two or three surg­eries ev­ery week.

“ We can re­pair all kinds of valves through the min­i­mally in­va­sive ap­proach.”

Blair O’Neill, in­com­ing pres­i­dent of the Cana­dian Car­dio­vas­cu­lar So­ci­ety, de­scribed the type of surgery Wil­liams re­ceived as “a work in progress,” hav­ing yet to un­dergo a full, sci­en­tific com­par­i­son with more tra­di­tional types of open-heart surgery.

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