Updated 1:50 p.m.
Sen. John Boozman (R-Ark.) has left an Arkansas hospital after emergency heart surgery last week and is now monitoring tornado recovery efforts in central parts of his home state, according to his office.
Tornadoes tore through a stretch of central United States on Sunday and killed at least 17 people in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and elsewhere. Additional twisters are forecast for Monday.
Boozman's aides released a statement at midday saying that the senator had left the hospital.
"While Arkansans are all too familiar with the destruction that Mother Nature can leave behind, it never gets easier," Boozman said in a statement about the deadly storms that hit Arkansas on Sunday. "Arkansans have always come together in the most difficult times to help neighbors in need. It’s clear that commitment continues today. I’m receiving regular updates from my staff about the current search and rescue effort. I will work with the governor’s office, the congressional delegation and FEMA Administrator Fugate to make sure that Arkansans get the resources they need to respond, rebuild and recover. We will help in any way we can.”
Earlier Monday, Boozman's doctor released a statement on the 63-year-old's condition.
"Senator Boozman is doing amazingly well after surgery to replace his ascending aorta," his surgeon, E.J. Chauvin, said. "One reason he is doing so well is because of his great physical condition. At this time we expect the senator to have a full recovery. He should be able to return to his full duties without any restrictions in the future."
Boozman was rushed to an Arkansas hospital last week by his wife after complaining of pain in his chest and arm. He is a first-term senator who was elected in 2010 after serving five terms in the House.