Randy Travis, who was hospitalized for cardiomyopathy and congestive heart failure earlier this month and suffered a stroke shortly thereafter, is on the mend, his doctors told ABC News in a statement.
The country star, 54, is still in critical condition.
“As a result of his heart condition, acutely, and the stroke, he was put on a ventilator to help him breathe during his hospitalization. He remains on that, but we are decreasing that support daily,” Dr. Gary Erwin said. “He is breathing spontaneously with the help of the ventilator and hope to have him weaned off of that very soon breathing completely on his own.”
Erwin added that Travis responded well to the surgical procedure he had to relieve the pressure in his brain caused by his stroke. “He is awake and alert, interacting with his family and friends and beginning to start doing some early physical therapy,” he said.
Dr. Michael Mack, a cardiac surgeon and the medical director of cardiovascular disease at Baylor Health Care System in Dallas, where Travis was treated, added that Travis’s condition is not likely the cause of hard living. (Last year, Travis was arrested for driving while intoxicated.)
“We performed a biopsy of his heart muscle and it shows scar tissue. It does not show active infection,” he said. “From the appearance on echocardiograms, which are images of his heart, this is not the appearance of either drugs or alcohol causing the heart condition. Mr. Travis does have a family history of cardiomyopathy and it is more likely related to that.”
Mary Davis, Travis’s fiancee, says that that Travis is grateful for the support he has received from his fans.
“I know that those are prayers that have helped mend his heart along with the skilled hands of the physicians and doctors and nurses,” she said. “I know that Randy feels each and every one of those. He feels the hands of the doctors and the care of the nurses and the love of his fans. His friends and family have all been touched by that. He is responding well to voices and he sees and he understands. He’s miles beyond where any of us thought he would be a few days ago.”