Ray Romano reveals he had life-saving heart surgery to prevent ‘widowmaker’ heart attack

Everybody loves Ray Romano: the stand-up comic is best known for his beloved sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond, which ran for 9 seasons.

Recently, the 65-year-old comedian revealed he had a serious medical scare after nearly suffering a major heart attack.

In an interview on the podcast WTF with Marc Maron, Romano revealed doctors found a “90 percent blockage” in his main artery, which put him in serious risk of suffering what’s known as a “widowmaker” heart attack.

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“I got kinda lucky that we found it before having a heart attack,” he told Marc Maron.

After they discovered the blockage, Romano underwent heart surgery and had a stent put in.

Romano also said that he has high cholesterol and has struggled to maintain a healthy diet. “I had high cholesterol 20 years ago and my guy always told me, ‘Why don’t we start going on the statins?’” he told Maron. “And every time, I said, ‘Let me do it myself, let me do it myself.’ And I would go home and I would eat right ― not vegan, but I would eat a little healthier, and get it down a couple ticks.”

“But then I’d go home and think I was hot shit and I got it down already, and I would start cheating, cheating. And that was the cycle… for 15, 16 years.”

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He reveals he is now on medication, and regrets not doing so from the beginning like his doctor suggested.

“I’m on the meds, and it’s got [my cholesterol] all down now, so I figure now I can enjoy and eat some food. My sugar level’s up now!” he added. “I’m in the pre-diabetic side.”

In a previous interview with ET, Romano revealed he experienced chest pains while working on his directorial debut Somewhere in Queens.

“I called my agent at one in the morning because I couldn’t sleep, I go, ‘I can’t do it, can’t do this,'” Romano told ET. “Because — I’m not joking — I had to go to my cardiologist in New York and get on the treadmill and do a stress test because I was getting chest pains.” 

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 27: Ray Romano attends NYFF57 Opening Night Gala Presentation & World Premiere of “The Irishman” on September 27, 2019 at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center in New York City. (Photo by Paul Bruinooge/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

Romano’s on-screen dad also had some major heart problems: Peter Boyle, who played Frank Barone on Everybody Loves Raymond, suffered a heart attack on set in 1999. He died in 2006 at the age of 71 after suffering heart disease and multiple myeloma.

Romano’s directorial debut Somewhere in Queens premieres this week; he also stars opposite Laurie Metcalf. Romano is also known for his voiceover role in the Ice Age films, and had major supporting roles in acclaimed films The Big Sick and The Irishman.

We’re glad Ray Romano found the blocked artery in time to prevent what could’ve been a fatal heart attack. We wish him the best health going forward.

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