Former U.S. President George W. Bush was released from the hospital and is at home again after undergoing a "successful" operation to unblock one of his arteries, his spokesman, Freddy Ford, said Wednesday.

The 67-year-old Bush is doing well after spending the night in Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas, Ford said.

Doctors inserted a stent to unblock the obstructed artery.

The former president is expected to resume his regular schedule on Thursday, Ford said.

The heart problem was detected on Monday during Bush's annual check-up at the Cooper Clinic in Dallas, the city where he has lived since he left the White House in 2009.

Bush "is grateful to the skilled medical professionals who have cared for him," Ford said in a statement. "He thanks his family, friends, and fellow citizens for their prayers and well wishes. And he encourages us all to get our regular check-ups."

The operation was a surprise given the good health Bush has enjoyed to date.

The ex-president went running every day for decades and later switched to bicycling when he began to have knee problems.

Since he left the presidency, Bush has taken part in the annual 100K (62-mile) cycling races in Texas together with wounded veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

Former President Bill Clinton, who has also undergone several heart operations, contacted Bush from Africa, where he is on a trip with his daughter Chelsea. EFE