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Jerry Lewis Suffers Minor Heart Attack

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Comedian Jerry Lewis is recovering in a San Diego hospital from a minor heart attack he suffered over the weekend near the end of a cross-country commercial airline flight, his spokeswoman said on Tuesday.

Lewis, 80, fell ill on Sunday en route home from New York City and was taken immediately to the hospital after his plane landed in San Diego, where the entertainer maintains a home, his Las Vegas-based publicist Candi Cazau told Reuters.

"It was determined that he suffered a very minor heart attack, and that he has a touch of pneumonia," she said, adding that doctors expect Lewis to make a complete recovery but have not decided how much longer he will remain hospitalized.

"He's doing extremely well," she said.

While he still intends to host his annual Labor Day telethon for muscular dystrophy in September, plans for a four-night comeback appearance July 13-16 at the Orleans Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas have been canceled, she said.

The engagement was to have marked Lewis's first live performances since his health took a turn for the worse six years ago.

Lewis returned home in January 2004 from a three-month hospital stay where he had been admitted to undergo a managed withdrawal from the steroid prednisone, which he had been taking for a chronic lung ailment, pulmonary fibrosis. He has since shed all the excess weight he gained from the steroid treatments, Cazau said.

Just last week, Lewis held a news conference to announce plans to transform his classic comedy film "The Nutty Professor" into a Broadway production that he planned to direct and bring to the stage sometime in 2008.

On Friday, he was the guest of honor at a Friar's Club roast, and on Saturday night he attended a party with the cast and crew of the NBC show "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," on which he is making two guest appearances this season, Cazau said.

In March, he was in Paris to receive his second Legion of Honor award, France's highest civilian accolade.


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