Pope Francis has successfully undergone a three-hour abdominal surgery in Gemelli Hospital on Wednesday Vatican, reports.
The Holy Father went to the Gemelli hospital shortly after his General Weekly Audience. His surgery according to the Vatican had been planned earlier by Pope’s medical professional. An incessant abdominal pain experienced by the Pope instigated the decision.
“The surgery, decided upon over the past few days by the medical team assisting the Holy Father, became necessary due to an incisional laparocele (hernia) that is causing recurrent, painful, and worsening sub-occlusive syndromes.,” the Vatican reports.
The Holy Father will remain in the hospital for several days “to allow for a normal post-operative course and full functional recovery.”
Dr. Sergio Alferi, the surgeon who operated on Pope said “The surgery and the general anesthesia went ahead without complications.”
“The Holy Father is well, he is awake, alert, and has already joked with me,” he added. Alferi confirmed also that Pope’s surgery wasn’t an emergency.
“Had it been an emergency, we would have intervened yesterday when he came into the hospital for a scheduled CAT scan.”
He further explained that the medical team “found several strong adhesions (internal scarring) between some partially congested mid-intestinal loops and the parietal peritoneum, causing” the pope increasingly frequent pain.
Alferi added that the diagnosed defects were repaired through “abdominal wall plastic surgery with the aid of a prosthetic mesh.”
All popes audiences however will be suspended until 18 June to enable the pope to make a “full functional recovery.”
The 86-year-old has experienced several health challenges over the years. In March he was diagnosed with bronchitis. He was hospitalized for three days, the course of which he responded to antibiotics. In 2021 Francis underwent colon surgery and had part of one of his lungs removed. In 2019 he underwent ocular surgery to treat cataracts. Francis suffers knee pains that confined him to using a wheelchair and sometimes a walking stick.