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Pope Francis underwent a three-hour surgery to remove intestinal scar tissue and fix an abdominal wall hernia, issues that emerged after prior surgeries, and he is said to be awake after spending his first night in the hospital.

Matteo Bruni, the Vatican’s spokesperson, said in a statement early on Thursday that “the night went well” and that more information would be provided later.


The procedure on Wednesday was a success, according to Dr. Sergio Alfieri, director of abdominal and endocrine sciences at Rome’s Gemelli hospital, and no problems or other pathologies were found.


Francis complained of growing bouts of pain and intestinal obstructions, and the surgery was scheduled as a result. Francis was hospitalised on Wednesday after his public audience and underwent the procedure a little while later after visiting Gemelli on Tuesday for inspections.

Francis’s surgery was most likely scheduled now to give him ample of recovery time before his planned trips later this summer, which include trips to Mongolia from August 31 to September 4 and to Portugal from August 2 to 6 for World Youth Day.

Adhesions, or internal scarring, on the intestine that had partially blocked it were removed by surgeons during the procedure. Alfieri disclosed that in addition to the colon operation in 2021, Francis had undergone earlier abdominal surgeries in his native Argentina before 2013, which had also resulted in scarring.

An artificial mesh was inserted into the abdominal wall to treat the hernia that had grown over a prior scar, according to Alfieri. The tissue that was removed was benign, he said, and the pope shouldn’t have any further diseases after recovering.

Evidently, the feared protrusion—a bulging of the intestine through the hernia tear—was not discovered.

Even though he was unconscious and in the hospital, Francis continued to be in command of the Vatican and the 1.3 billion-member Catholic Church, in accordance with canon law.


Francis spent 10 days at Gemelli in July 2021 having 33 centimeters (13 inches) of his big intestine removed. Francis stated that the diverticulosis, or bulges in his intestinal wall, that led to that operation had reappeared in a January interview with The Associated Press.

Francis bemoaned the fact that the general anesthesia hadn’t worked effectively on him after that operation. His refusal to have surgery to fix strained knee ligaments that have required him to use a wheelchair and walker for more than a year was partially explained by that reaction.



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