Ex-Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen reveals heart surgery date

The veteran Centre Party politician won re-election to parliament, and says his heart condition hasn't stopped him doing his job.

File picture of Matti Vanhanen / Credit: Vanhanen 2018 presidential campaign website

Former prime minister and presidential candidate¬†Matti Vanhanen (Centre) has revealed that he’ll have heart surgery in the summer to correct an ongoing medical problem.

The politician, who was re-elected to parliament in last week’s general election, suffers from arrhythmia – in layman’s terms his heart beats with an irregular rhythm.

“The surgery has been around for some time now. It is a preventive operation in which the valve is replaced and the aorta is supported. In addition, some operations are being carried out to prevent arrhythmias” he says.

Vanhanen says that neither the valve replacement nor aortic support is urgently needed, which is why he’s been waiting for surgery. The veteran politician also stresses that his condition hasn’t impacted his ability to work.

“Because of arrhythmias, I have strong medication that calms the heart rate” he explains.

After surgery in August, Vanhanen expects to spend several months recovering before returning to work in parliament during the autumn.

In November 2017, Matti Vanhanen paused his presidential campaign for a few days while he went to hospital for treatment for his heart condition.

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