Don Ho's recovery on target
By Wayne Harada
Advertiser Entertainment Writer
By Wayne Harada
Six months after his experimental heart procedure in Thailand, entertainer Don Ho, 75, says his recovery is on target and he continues to gain strength.
"I have more and more energy," said the 'Ohana Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel trouper and dean of Island entertainers. "I'm going to be dangerous again — pretty soon!"
As he marks the half-year anniversary of his adult stem cell procedure — officially called VesCell Adult Stem Cell therapy, involving an injection of stem cells, taken from his own blood, directly into his heart to treat heart disease and invigorate the muscle — Ho continues his two-shows-a-week regimen, singing in the production and orchestrating his retinue of resident troupers.
His delicate procedure was performed at the Bangkok Heart Hospital by Dr. Kit Arom, a renowned cardiothoracic surgeon and prime mover in the stem cell procedure, and Dr. Amit Patel of the University of Pittsburgh.
At the request of his physician, Arom, Ho appeared in a short Q&A session at an informational seminar for the public at the Renaissance Ilikai, a session presented by the Bangkok Heart Hospital. The night before the seminar, "Dr. Kit," as Ho calls him, took in the Ho performance to see his famous patient in action.
As he continues to monitor his recovery, Ho has minimized his exertion, which means limiting his handyman projects, and he's maintaining a sensible diet. But he said he gets a lift when he convenes with his fans twice a week.
Next up: his 75th birthday, on Aug. 13.
Reach Wayne Harada at firstname.lastname@example.org.
• Correction: Don Ho's shows at the Hoku Hale Showroom, 'Ohana Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel, take place at 7:30 p.m. Thursdays and Sundays. A wrong date was given in an earlier version of this story.