70-year-old Arnold Schwarzenegger underwent heart valve surgery at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center on Thursday and is reportedly recovering and in good spirits.
His spokesman Daniel Ketchell says his first words upon waking up from surgery were a play on his iconic catchphrase from the 1984 film The Terminator. “I’m back,” the former governor and action star uttered, once the anesthesia wore off.
All five films in The Terminator genre include the phrase “I’ll be back, or some sort of variation like “She’ll be back” in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines.
The surgery was not for a new heart issue, but to replace a pulmonic valve that was initially replaced in 1997 because of a congenital heart defect. Back in ’97, Schwarzenegger underwent a less-invasive open heart surgery. Still, open heart surgery was an option in case it was needed this time around.
Schwarzenegger has said that his condition never caused him pain, but he decided to go through with the surgery to prevent any problems that could shorten his life. “Choosing to undergo open-heart surgery when I never felt sick was the hardest decision I’ve ever made,” he said at the time. “I can now look forward to a long, healthy life with my family.”