Pope Francis “reacted well” to planned intestinal surgery on Sunday evening at Rome hospital, the Vatican has announced.
In a statement late in the evening, Matteo Bruni, a Holy See spokesman, said Francis, 84, had general anesthesia during the surgery necessitated by a stenosis, or narrowing, of the sigmoid portion of the large intestine. According to the statement given by the Vatican, Pope Francis was being treated at the Gemelli University Hospital for “ symptomatic diverticular stenosis” of the colon.
Diverticular disease is a condition that involves bulges in the wall of the large intestine. This can lead to narrowing, of the colon.
During his Sunday blessing at St Peter’s Square, the Pope announced that he would go to Slovakia in September after celebrating Mass In Budapest, the capital of neighboring Hungary.
The surgery at the Gemelli Polyclinic, a Catholic teaching hospital, is the Pope's first known treatment in hospital since he was elected to the papacy in 2013.
Born in 1936 in Buenos Aires, Francis lost part of his right lung at the age of 21. He also suffers from a hip problem and sciatica.