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Utah man's post-surgery reaction was real, couple says on 'Today Show'

Published: Saturday, Sept. 5 2015 2:10 a.m. MDT

On Wednesday morning, Jason and Candice Mortensen from Orem, Utah, appeared on the On Wednesday morning, Jason and Candice Mortensen from Orem, Utah, appeared on the "Today Show" to discuss the video of Mortensen coming out of surgery that has gone viral. (The "Today" Show screen shot)

Wednesday morning Jason and Candice Mortensen from Orem, Utah, appeared on the "Today Show" to discuss the video of Jason Mortensen coming out of surgery that has gone viral.

The couple sat happily together, answering questions about the footage they will keep to laugh at forever. Candice Mortensen said her husband had been acting "loopy" (as the "Today" website put it) for 20 minutes before she decided to pull out her phone and record the funny statements Mortensen was making.

"I finally realized, I need to get this on video so he can see how he acts, and so I can show people because I was alone, so I was excited," Mortensen said on the "Today Show." "He genuinely didn’t remember a thing about that when I showed him the video."

While Mortensen's video has gone viral, the "Today Show" hosts also pointed out the many critics who have pegged it as fake. Slate magazine even joined the online commenters by posting an article analyzing the video's authenticity after interviewing a psychologist who specializes in memory impairment.

Wednesday morning, Jason and Candice Mortensen from Orem, Utah, appeared on the Wednesday morning, Jason and Candice Mortensen from Orem, Utah, appeared on the "Today Show" to discuss the video of Mortensen coming out of surgery that has gone viral. (Linkdin profile)

"The video itself raises two questions," Emma Roller wrote in the Slate article. "Why would someone's wife be at the ready to film her husband's first moments of consciousness post-op? And would Mortensen really be wearing a hospital gown with a paw print on its front after recovering from hernia surgery?"

But before bringing the couple onto "Today" Wednesday morning, producers at the show contacted Mortensen's doctor to confirm that the surgery actually took place.

"Jason’s surgeon, Dr. Paul Robinson at Intermountain Healthcare Hospital in American Fork, Utah, confirmed to the 'Today Show' that he performed the operation on Jason," the website said. "He added that Jason’s reaction was unusual, but not impossible. Robinson was not in the room when the video was shot."

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Mortensen expressed on the show that his doctor had received about "150" calls regarding the authenticity of his surgery. But as he posted in the description below the original video on YouTube, surgery was nothing new for him and neither is his reaction.

"I’ve had surgeries previously, and I guess I’ve been a weirdo during all of them," Mortensen said during the interview on the "Today Show." "Thank goodness (Candice) had the peace of mind to pull out the camera this time, or the sense of mind."

The most recent surgery was to fix tears from a previous hernia surgery, Mortensen said. The "Today Show" reported that Mortensen's multiple surgeries have reduced the couple's chance to naturally conceive a child and that they are currently in the process of adopting a child from Uganda.

Email: spetersen@deseretnews.com

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