Pope Francis Health: Pontiff Undergoes Major Intestinal Surgery in Rome Hospital

Pope Francis, who underwent a major intestinal surgery Sunday, is currently doing well, according to the Vatican. The Holy Father reacted well to the surgery, an official statement released by the Pope's spokesperson Matteo Bruni stated.

Pope Francis, who is now 84 years old, entered planned surgery in Rome's Gemelli hospital, hours after conducting the traditional Sunday Angelus prayer in St. Peter's Square.

While the statement didn't give any details about the surgery or how long the Pope has to stay at the hospital, it did say that the surgery wasn't prompted by an emergency.

What is Symptomatic Diverticular Stenosis?

Pope Francis underwent a scheduled surgery for "symptomatic diverticular stenosis" of the colon. Diverticular stenosis is a condition where people develop sac-like pouches from the muscular layer of the colon, leading it to become narrow.

Pope Francis

In addition to causing pain, diverticular stenosis can lead to inflammation, bloating and difficulty in bowel movement. This condition mostly affects older people. A team of 10 medical experts carried out the operation on Pope Francis at the Rome hospital.

Pope Francis Health Problems

Pope Francis earlier had surgery for the removal of a part of one of his lungs following an illness when he was young and in Argentina.

Francis also suffers from sciatica, a condition that causes pain radiating from the lower back along the sciatic nerve to the legs.

Reportedly, Francis receives regular physiotherapy for this condition. He was forced to miss several events at the beginning of this year due to the health crisis and it has led him to walk on several occasions.

Moreover, in 2020, Francis had a bad cold that kept him from taking part in a week-long Lenten retreat with senior aides south of Rome, according to Reuters.

Lesser Known Facts About Pope Francis

  • Pope Francis was born Jorge Mario Bergoglio in Argentina on December 17, 1936.
  • He is the first Jesuit to be elected as Pope. No other Pope in Catholic history has ever had the name Francis.
  • Pope Francis loved to dance; he used to do the tango with his girlfriend in his pre-priest days
  • During his youth, Francis worked as a bouncer at a bar in his birthplace Buenos Aires.
  • Francis is currently a citizen of three different countries - Argentina, Italy, and the Vatican.
  • Pope Francis has many health issues and a part of his lung was removed when he was in his teens.