Gov. Dunleavy undergoes successful shoulder surgery

A man talks next to a flag.
Gov. Mike Dunleavy discusses the state of the coronavirus pandemic during a news conference in August 2021. (Matthew Faubion/Alaska Public Media)

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy underwent shoulder surgery Wednesday, and a statement from his office said he’s “recovering and doing well.”

Dunleavy turned power over to Lt. Gov. Kevin Meyer during the procedure, Dunleavy’s spokesperson Patty Sullivan told The Associated Press.

The governor’s office said the wear and tear on his shoulder came from a lifetime of sports and physical activity. The statement said the governor indicated repair was long overdue.

Dunleavy, a Republican, planned to work from home in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough this week as he recovers, the statement said.

Other details of the surgery, the transfer of power to Meyer and why this wasn’t made public before the surgery were not immediately available.

In August 2019, Dunleavy’s office announced that biopsies of skin variations removed from his head confirmed a basal cell carcinoma, or a mild form of skin cancer. He underwent a procedure to remove the carcinoma.

Dunleavy temporarily suspended his gubernatorial campaign in 2017 for medical issues involving his heart. In reviving his campaign, Dunleavy said his treatments were successful.

In November 2016, then-Gov. Bill Walker announced he had a treatable form of prostate cancer and planned to undergo surgery a month later outside Alaska. However, he did not name the state or hospital where the surgery was held.

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