Gov. Norm Bangerter is scheduled to undergo surgery on a severely arthritic right knee joint next Tuesday, the day after he is sworn in for a second term in office.
The governor underwent a medical work-up Thursday at the University of Utah Hospital, and, except for his right knee, is in good health, according to hospital spokesman John Dwan."His knee's in bad shape but the rest of him is in good shape," Dwan said, describing the arthritic condition that has plagued Bangerter for several years.
Arthroscopic knee surgery will help ease the increasing discomfort Bangerter suffers as a result of the arthritis, Dwan said, but will not "guarantee him he's going to have pain-free use of his knees."
Pain sent him to the hospital during his re-lection campaign last fall, but the governor elected to postpone surgery until after the November election, then delayed it again until after his inauguration.
The surgery is set to be performed at 6:30 a.m. Tuesday and the governor is expected to be sent home later that day, although he will likely need crutches for a week to 10 days, Dwan said.
A spokeswoman for the governor said he believes he Bangerter will be able to abandon the crutches before the 1989 Legislature convenes on Jan. 9, six days after the operation.