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Randy Travis gets heart implant

TEXAS — Randy Travis’s publicist denied media reports that the country singer had heart surgery, but he did say Tuesday that Travis received a device to help blood flow.

Travis, 54, was admitted to an unidentified Texas hospital on Sunday because of complications related to his “recently acquired viral cardiomyopathy,” Travis spokesman Kirt Webster said in a written statement.

Travis remained in critical condition Tuesday, Webster said.

The singer “underwent the placement of an Impella peripheral left ventricular assist device for stabilization prior to transferring hospitals.”

The Mayo Clinic’s website described the device as “an implantable mechanical pump that helps pump blood from the lower chambers of your heart to the rest of your body.”

Travis had recently been on the road, performing in Detroit on June 28 and Chicago on June 29.  He was set to do a show in Deadwood, South Dakota, on Wednesday.

TravisHe appeared well during business meetings on Friday and Saturday, Webster said.  “Then on Sunday, it hit him.”

Viral cardiomyopathy is a disorder where a virus attacks the muscles of the heart, causing the heart to beat slower, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website.  In some cases, the heart can stop, it said.

For more on this CNN story, click here.

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