A hospital in the southeastern U.S. state of Tennessee has confirmed that Steve Jobs, the co-founder and chief executive of Apple Computers, recently received a liver transplant.

Jobs received the transplant at Methodist University Hospital in Memphis.  Dr. James D. Eason, the hospital's chief of transplantation, issued a statement saying Jobs scored high on a test that measures a patient's urgent need for a transplant, making him "the sickest patient on the waiting list."  
Eason said Jobs is recovering from the procedure, and is making an excellent prognosis.  He did not say when the surgery was performed.

The Wall Street Journal newspaper first reported that Jobs had received a transplant last Saturday.  The Journal said that Jobs would have had a shorter wait time in Tennessee, where the state has no residency requirement for transplants.  

An Apple spokesman, Steve Dowling, would not confirm the report, but said Jobs is looking forward to returning to work at the end of June.

The 54-year-old Jobs announced in January that he was taking a six-month medical leave to deal with a hormone imbalance.  He was successfully treated for a rare form of pancreatic cancer in 2004.

He co-founded Apple in 1976 and is viewed as the driving force behind the development of groundbreaking products such as the iPod and iPhone.  He left Apple in 1985 and returned in 1997 to rescue it from financial distress.



Some information for this report was provided by AP.