File picture: Luca Bruno / AP Photo.

Vienna - Formula One triple world champion Niki Lauda has been released from hospital, the Vienna General Hospital said on Wednesday, after he was treated for influenza following a lung transplant five months ago.

Lauda, a 69-year-old Austrian, had been holidaying in the Spanish island of Ibiza when he was flown to the hospital for treatment in early January.

A hospital spokeswoman confirmed Lauda had left hospital on Wednesday, when asked about a report by APA newswire.

Lauda, who was badly burned in 1976 in a Formula One race and later became an airline entrepreneur, underwent a lung transplant in August and was recuperating from the surgery.

Lauda later said that undergoing a lung transplant had been worse than his horrific crash at the German Grand Prix in 1976, which left him with severe burns.

"When I had the accident in Germany it was only a matter of a month or so, I had burns, I was burnt, but I left it quickly. Now it was really long, but I'm still here ...," Lauda said in an interview with Gazzetta Dello Sport.

Lauda was given the last rites after his crash only to return to the cockpit later that season after missing just three grands prix.

Since then he has suffered from the after-effects of the toxic gases he inhaled in the accident and also required kidney transplants in 1997 and 2005.

Reuters & Agence France-Presse