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Regis Philbin to have bypass surgery

Story Highlights

• Regis Philbin having triple bypass surgery
• Philbin is co-host of "Live with Regis and Kelly"
• Philbin holds record for most on-camera TV hours
From Chris Kokenes
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(CNN) -- Regis Philbin, co-host of "Live with Regis and Kelly," announced on the Monday morning show that he will undergo triple bypass surgery this week.

"Darn it, I don't want to do it. Nobody wants to do it," Philbin griped to his co-host, Kelly Ripa.

"But they tell me. I had a second opinion. So they are all in agreement that it should be the bypass. And so that's what I'm going to do. So, you know, I'm going to do it this week, and come back when I'm ready."

Philbin, who had an angioplasty procedure 14 years ago, is expected to be off the show for at least five weeks.

A series of co-hosts will fill in, according to a show spokesperson. Live performances scheduled for later this month in Palm Desert and Pala, California, have been canceled.

Philbin, 75, has appeared in various talk and game shows over the past 40 years, including the prime-time hit "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire."

According to the "Live from Regis and Kelly" Web site, he is listed in Guinness World Records for most hours on camera in television, logging 15,662 hours over his entertainment career.

He created "The Morning Show" for WABC in his native Manhattan in 1983, and was joined by Kathie Lee Gifford in June 1985 before the program went into national syndication in September 1988 under the title "Live with Regis and Kathie Lee." In 2001, Gifford left the show and was replaced by Kelly Ripa.

Philbin and his wife, Joy, have two grown daughters.

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Regis Philbin announced on "Live with Regis and Kelly" that he'll be having triple bypass surgery.



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