Rochester, MN (KROC-AM News)- A Minnesota Senator representing part of the Rochester area is recovering after undergoing a successful open heart surgery. 

Get our free mobile app

A spokesman for Sen. Carla Nelson says she had the procedure done at the Mayo Clinic on June 22. It was a planned operation to treat hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), a condition in which the walls of the heart become thicker, making it difficult for the heart to effectively pump blood throughout the body. 

Nelson’s office is reporting no complications following the surgery. She’s now embarking on a 6-8 week recovery period with physical therapy. 

Photo provided by Carla Nelson
Photo provided by Carla Nelson

Nelson is expected to make a full recovery. The Rochester-area State Senator released the following statement regarding the announcement of her surgery:

First and foremost, I am beyond grateful for my incredible Mayo care team. We are truly blessed to have such amazing medical professionals, experts, and innovators right here in Southeast Minnesota, and I knew I was in the best possible hands from the moment I was diagnosed.

“During my recovery period, I will sadly not be able to attend the in-district events that I enjoy so much but I will continue to monitor things from my home, and I look forward to returning to my usual full calendar around mid-August. 

“I also want to encourage everyone to pay attention should their doctor hear a heart murmur. If you are not a medical professional, it is unlikely you have heard of HCM before. I sure hadn’t. It is quite common – about 1 in 500 people have HCM, but a large percentage of those are undiagnosed. Figuring out if you are at risk as early as possible is critical to avoid potential complications.

“I appreciate everybody’s thoughts and well wishes as I recover. I am excited to see all of you again very soon. In the meantime, my office is open and running full steam ahead. You can reach me at

The 66-year-old Nelson has served as a member of the Minnesota Senate since 2011. She represents southern and western Rochester as well as Stewartville, Byron and  Dodge County.

12 Celebrities Who Have Been Patients at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota

When you are one of the best hospitals in the world, you are going to attract some celebrities. The Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota has seen quite a few throughout its history.

More From Minnesota Now