Broadcaster Paul Holmes has returned to Hawkes Bay Hospital after complications left him gasping for breath.
The 62-year-old had open-heart surgery in Auckland last week.
But the surgery left him suffering from extreme breathlessness and delusions, the New Zealand Herald reports.
"I came out of hospital on Wednesday, but on Friday I needed a wheelchair. I spent the first two nights gasping for breath," he told the Herald.
The four-hour operation was to rectify his hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a genetic condition in which the heart muscle becomes thick and blocks blood flow.
He said the operation was "a real wake-up".
Holmes said his wife and daughter had been amused at his ramblings when he came out of the anaesthesia.
"I dreamed Queen Elizabeth was ordering me to fix tail-guns on broken-down World War II bomber planes for her Jubilee," he said.
"I had hallucinations of Bohemian dancers in a fairground!"
Holmes said he is on the road to recovery as his nightmares have gone and his breathing is better.
He expects to leave hospital tomorrow and return home to his nearby Hastings farm in Mana Lodge.