R.J. Cooper is resting after open-heart surgery


Cooper remains in ICU today following open-heart surgery at Johns Hopkins. (Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post)

“Everything went according to plan,” said Angie Salame, brand manager for Rogue 24, Cooper’s tasting-menu-only restasurant. “He’s just recovering.”

The chef went under the knife this morning to repair a heart defect known as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, or a thickening of the heart muscle that makes it harder to pump blood.

Cooper’s wife and business partner, Judy Cooper, has been providing updates via both her Facebook page and the chef’s personal section on CarePages.com (registration required).

In the early afternoon, Judy Cooper posted this on the CarePages’ site:

He is out of surgery and in the ICU now. He is still drugged and not awake yet. They are monitoring his heart rhythm now which is critical.

Salame didn’t know the chef’s exact condition, but she said he was still groggy and hadn’t spoken yet. “Definitely completely totally drugged still,” she said about the chef.

More as we know it on Cooper’s condition.

Tim Carman serves as the full-time writer for the Post's Food section and as the $20 Diner for the Weekend section, a double duty that requires he ingest more calories than a draft horse.

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