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Peter Jackson's Surgery Explained: Was Ulcer Dangerous?

Peter Jackson in 2009.
Peter Jackson at "Lovely Bones" press conference in 2009. (Marty Melville/Getty Images) Marty Melville/Getty Images

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (CBS/AP) - It can happen to anyone. Now it's happened to "Lord of the Rings" director Sir Peter Jackson.

The cinematic giant has been laid low by a perforated ulcer. He underwent surgery to repair in his native New Zealand, according to his publicist, who said Jackson was suffering from severe stomach the night before.

Perforated ulcers can be dangerous.

They occur when an ulcer eats through the lining of the stomach or small intestine. If it breaks through, stomach acid can leak into the abdominal cavity. That's why doctors are quick to repair it with surgery. Most other ulcers are just treated with antibiotics and antacids.

The good news is Jackson is said to be recovering nicely. But for "Rings" fans clamoring for his sequel, the "Hobbit," the wait just got a little longer. Filming will be delayed.

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