Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Health Alert: Johnny Hallyday

French rock icon Johnny Hallyday is in a medically induced coma at a
U.S. hospital as a result of an operation gone bad in France,
according to the singer's handlers.

Music producer Jean-Claude Camus said the 66-year-old singer is
expected to recover from surgery to fix the damage. Camus told
France's TF1 television on Friday that Hallyday was put in a coma "so
he won't suffer. The news is very positive, he's very strong," said the rocker's son
David Hallyday on France-Info radio as he arrived Friday at the
hospital in Los Angeles where his father is recuperating.

Hallyday checked himself into Cedars Sinai to fix back problems that
stemmed from a Nov. 26 surgery in Paris for a herniated disc.

According to a release from Hallyday's publicist, lesions from the
first operation required more surgery and the singer had also suffered
an infection. Camus told France-Info radio that the American medical team discovered
the infection was attacking the singer's bone marrow. He went on to say: "It seems the Americans fixed things that they found that were very badly done." The remarks have not gone unnoticed by Dr. Stephane Delajoux, the French surgeon who first operated on Hallyday. Delajoux released a statement saying the initial surgery had "taken place perfectly."

Hallyday's predicament has caused an uproar in France, with President
Nicolas Sarkozy expressing how most of his countrymen feel. "It provokes great emotion in France because he's a much-loved man and, for each of us, he represents a bit of our personal history: memories, feelings, songs, music," he said. Delajoux has found himself under attack, verbally and physically. Police in Paris are investigating an alleged assault Friday on the doctor as he left a friend's home.
Delajoux contends a masked man attacked him, while another stood by making sure no one saw the beating.

Meanwhile, the singer's lawyer, Virginie Lappe, has stated her client
is not ruling out the possibility of legal action.

Hallyday had been on a multi-city farewell tour in France called
"Route 66." The performer, whose real name is Jean-Philippe Smet, made it big in
France during the 1960s and 1970s with his American-inspired rock. He
is considered by many to be France's Elvis Presley, with more than 100
million albums sold and 18 platinum albums.

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