Steve Jobs Had Liver Transplant, Will Come Back Part-Time

Steve Jobs, good for Huffpo tout

Apple (AAPL) CEO Steve Jobs had surgery in Tennessee to get a liver transplant about two months ago, the WSJ reports.

Steve is still coming back later this month, but he might work part-time for a couple months, says a WSJ source. Bloomberg first reported in January that Steve was “considering” a liver transplant.

COO Tim Cook, who has acted as interim CEO since Steve took a leave in January, is set to gain “a more encompassing role,” says the WSJ’s source. Tim could get a board seat soon.

A doctor told the Journal about 75% of patients who have had the type of pancreatic cancer Steve had “are going to have the disease spread over the course of their life”–with the implication being that Steve’s cancer had probably metastasized in his liver.

It’s a bit controversial for patients with Steve’s conditions to get a new liver, says the WSJ, because “livers are scarce and the surgery’s efficacy as a cure hasn’t been proved.”

Criteria the Apple cofounder had to meet to get the surgery included “appropriateness of the surgery as a treatment, extensive medical and psychological test results, age and the ability to care for the organ. Patients are ranked on a list using a complex algorithm that determines how critical the need is.”

He likely chose Tennessee for the surgery because the waiting list for a donated liver is much shorter there (48 days), than elsewhere in the country.

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