Dick Cheney released from hospital after heart transplant

(CNN) -- Vice President Dick Cheney has been released from a Virginia hospital 10 days after undergoing a heart transplant, his office said Tuesday.

Cheney, 71, who has a history of heart trouble, had surgery at Inova Fairfax Hospital in Falls Church, Virginia. He's suffered at least five heart attacks since 1978,

"As he leaves the hospital, the former Vice President and his family want to again express their deep gratitude to the donor and the donor's family for this remarkable gift," his office said in a statement.

Cheney had been on the cardiac transplant list for more than 20 months.

In June 2010, he was hospitalized at George Washington University for conditions related to his coronary artery disease. He had a left ventricular assist device implanted to help his heart pump.

Nine years earlier, Cheney got a pacemaker after experiencing irregular heart rhythms.

The former Wyoming congressman served as an influential vice president with President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2009, and he had served in and out of government since the late 1960s.