Now we know why The Rolling Stones postponed their North American tour: Mick’s got a bad valve in his heart, something that might have been uncovered during an exhaustive pre-tour medical checkup.
According to multiple sources, Mick will undergo keyhole surgery–nothing open heart–to have a valve replaced with something mechanical or made of animal tissue.
This sort of thing once required cracking open the breastbone to get right to the heart. Surgeons would then hook the patient to a heart-lung machine, stop the heart, make the repair, restart the ticket, close everything up and wait for the healing to begin.
Things are much better today thanks to a new much less invasive sort of surgery.
A tube–a catheter–is fed through a vein in the groin up through to the heart. Using micro-instruments, the valve can then be repaired without having to stop the heart. This sort of thing can be accomplished during a 48-hour hospital visit. Success rates are very high.
Within two week or so, Mick should be feeling pretty good. And a month or so after that, he should be back to normal. That should mean The Stones could be back on tour by late summer.
Mick can afford to have the best cardiac surgeons, nurses, and anesthesiologists for the operation. But can you imagine being on the surgical team? Everyone will be thinking “I’m not gonna be the person that loses Mick Jagger…”