Pope Francis addresses Vatican crowds prior to colon surgery
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The pontiff is recovering from intestinal surgery, gradually resuming work, walking and eating with aides, the Vatican confirmed earlier today. It confirmed that his blood tests were satisfactory.
The 84-year-old pope is in hospital after undergoing a three-hour operation last Sunday to remove part of his colon, which the Vatican said had narrowed severely.
Spokesman Matteo Bruni said the pope had a relaxed day yesterday, adding that the pontiff was continuing with his prescribed treatment.
Mr Bruni said in a statement: “In the afternoon, he celebrated Holy Mass in the private chapel and in the evening he dined with those who are assisting him during these days.”
It is the first time Pope Francis has been hospitalised since he became pope in 2013.
The Vatican has already announced that he will deliver his traditional Sunday noon prayer tomorrow and message from the 10th floor of the Gemelli Hospital in Rome, where a suite is reserved for popes.
It will be the first time since his election as pope that he will not read the prayer from the Vatican, except for when he was away on trips.
Last Sunday Pope Francis was admitted to a hospital for scheduled surgery on his colon.
The octogenarian had been suffering from symptomatic diverticular stenosis, or restriction, of the colon.
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The news came hours after the pope greeted the public in St Peter’s Square for the traditional Sunday Angelus prayer.
The Holy See press office said in a statement at the time: “This afternoon his Holiness Pope Francis went to the Gemelli Hospital – Rome – for a scheduled surgical intervention for a symptomatic stenotic diverticulitis.
“Surgery will be carried out by professor Sergio Alfieri.
“At the end of the surgery a medical bulletin will be issued.”
Stenotic diverticulitis refers to a narrowing of the large intestine.
Diverticula are small pockets that develop in the lining of the intestine, and typically occurs in older people.
Most people with the illness do not get any symptoms.
The diverticula can become painful and cause tummy upsets if it becomes infected.
Surgery to treat the conditions typically involves removing the affected section of the large intestine, known as a colectomy.
Last week Pope Francis used his Sunday appearance to ask the public for special prayers for himself.
He said: “I ask you to pray for the pope, pray in a special way.
“The pope needs your prayers.”
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