Apple Inc. Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs is recovering well from a liver transplant in Memphis and has an “excellent prognosis,” according to a statement by the Tennessee hospital where the procedure was done.

The statement, issued with Jobs' approval, did not say when the operation occurred. Jobs was the sickest patient on the waiting list at the time a liver was available, Dr. James Eason, chief of transplantation at the Methodist University Hospital Transplant Institute, said in a statement yesterday.

Mr. Jobs underwent a complete transplant evaluation and was listed for transplantation for an approved indication in accordance with the Transplant Institute policies and United Network for Organ Sharing policies, the statement said. Jobs was the patient with the highest MELD (model for end-stage liver disease) score of his blood type, according to the statement.

Apple’s stock price and its perceived corporate health have been affected by even how skinny or gaunt Jobs looked at public appearances. Jobs, 54, said he’d been treated for a tumor in his pancreas five years ago that could ultimately affect his liver and require a transplant.

Jobs has been on medical leave from Apple since mid-January when he announced that he was suffering from a hormone imbalance and needed to take time off to rest and recover well. At the time he said he expected to return to work sometime in June.

Reports have shown that Jobs already returned to work on Monday, according to CNBC.