Football: Former Arsenal star Nwankwo Kanu has corrective heart surgery

ABUJA, NIGERIA (AFP) - Former Nigeria striker Nwankwo Kanu has undergone corrective cardiac surgery in the United States.

Onyebuchi Abia, the co-ordinator of the Kanu Heart Foundation, said on Monday that the rangy former Arsenal forward and Super Eagles skipper was operated on at the weekend in Cleveland, Ohio.

"It was a corrective heart surgery," Abia, without specifying the nature of the ailment, was quoted as saying in a number of Nigerian newspapers. "He normally goes for a medical check-up annually and it was during one of such checks he was operated on to correct a heart-related issue. He is now recuperating. I spoke to him on Sunday."

The 37-year-old first underwent heart surgery in the late 1990s to correct a faulty aortic valve.

The experience prompted him to set up a foundation to build five hospitals in Africa to treat undiagnosed heart disease and provide surgery.

At the weekend, the Nigerian government named Kanu among the 100 most distinguished Nigerians during a ceremony to mark the centenary of the unification of north and south Nigeria.

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