The Pentagon reports that US Defense Minister Lloyd Austin is still hospitalized due to complications following prostate removal surgery. There is still no specific date for his release from the medical facility.
Pentagon Chief Lloyd Austin underwent prostatectomy in December 2023 due to the diagnosis of prostate cancer, the ministry announced on Tuesday.
As Walter Reed military hospital, where the US Secretary of Defense is staying, said in a statement, Austin underwent successful prostate removal and was discharged the day after the surgery.
However, complications after the surgery resulted in him being in hospital again on January 1. According to doctors, his condition is constantly improving.
The head of the Pentagon in the hospital
“His prostate cancer was detected early and his prognosis is excellent,” the facility emphasized. She added that the reason for Austin’s readmission to the hospital was severe abdominal and leg pain caused by a urinary tract infection. The Pentagon chief was allegedly unconscious during the procedure, but remained conscious throughout his stay in the hospital.
The Ministry of Defense has so far refused to provide the reasons for Austin’s hospitalization or the surgery he underwent. When asked about the reasons, Pentagon spokesman Gen. Pat Ryder said that prostate cancer and related surgery are a “deeply personal” matter.
He also said that although Austin’s condition is improving, it is not yet known when he will return from the hospital. However, he emphasized that since Friday he has been fully performing his duties remotely from the hospital.
Pentagon announces Austin’s operation with delay
The issue of the Pentagon chief’s health condition caused a political storm in Washington, because the ministry informed the White House about it only three days later, and the public about it four days after the Secretary of Defense was admitted to the hospital. The White House was also not informed about the prostate surgery itself.
Both Austin and Ryder admitted they made mistakes and vowed to review procedures to ensure it doesn’t happen again. Despite calls for his resignation, the White House and Pentagon have denied they are considering firing Austin.
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