Max Page, the child actor who played Darth Vader in the enormously popular Volkswagen Super Bowl commercial in 2011, is recovering today after having undergone successful open heart surgery at Children's Hospital Los Angeles.
The 7-year-old, who now appears on the CBS soap opera "The Young and the Restless," was born with a congenital heart defect and Thursday's surgery replaced his pulmonary valve and repaired a hole in his heart.
The operation took two hours and the valve used is expected to last about 15 years before it will need to be replaced with noninvasive surgery, according to the hospital.
Page is not just a patient, but also a Junior Ambassador for the hospital he has been coming to for treatment since he was an infant.
"If you use your force and dream big, you can achieve anything. We may be small but we are mighty," Page tells other kids facing scary situations.
In preparation for the surgery, Page with the help of his mom, Jennifer, put together a "Can Do" list to focus on all the things he is capable of accomplishing and can control. One of the items on the list was "fun up" the house, which resulted in every room of the Pages' home having a different name and theme.
"Everything that was boring is now in our small garage and everything that is fun is out and accessible," Jennifer Page told NBC News. "We're so lucky that we have an articulate son that's able to tell us how to help him."
Page is expected to be in the hospital for five days and faces six to eight weeks of recovery.
ABC News' David Wright and the Associated Press contributed to this report.
- Disease & Medical Conditions
- congenital heart defect