Politics

Chavez suffered bleeding after cancer surgery, says Venezuela official

venezuela_hugo_chavez_box_2012_10_01.jpg

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez wears boxing gloves during a campaign rally in Acarigua, northwestern Venezuela, on Sept. 24, 2012. Chavez is seeking a third term to extend his 13-year rule of the oil-rich South American country.

Credit:

Juan Barreto

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez survived cancer surgery in Cuba on Tuesday, but he is not out of the woods yet.

Information Minister Ernesto Villegas said Thursday that Chavez suffered bleeding after the six-hour operation — his fourth since mid-2011 — and required "corrective measures," Reuters reported.

"This process of recovery will take time because of the complexity of the operation," Villegas said in a national broadcast. 

"The patient is in a progressive and favorable recovery of normal vital signs."

Further details on the 58-year-old’s condition were not provided.

On Wednesday, Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro, who has been named Chavez’s successor, said the surgery had been "complex, difficult, delicate," and that Chavez faced an equally "complex" recovery.

More from GlobalPost: Nicolas Maduro named as Chavez's successor as the Venezuelan leader faces cancer surgery

The Venezuelan government has flagged the possibility that Chavez will not return home in time for his Jan. 10 swearing-in ceremony.

Villegas said on a government website that if Chavez wasn't well enough by then, “our people should be prepared to understand it,” the Associated Press reported. 

Chavez declared earlier this year that he was cancer-free and went on to win the October presidential election.

More from GlobalPost: Has the myth of Chavez been broken? 

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