WASHINGTON — First Lady Melania Trump on Monday underwent “successful” kidney surgery at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for what was described as a “benign” ailment.
“Melania Trump underwent an embolization procedure to treat a benign kidney issue. She will likely remain there for the duration of the week,” her office said in a statement.
“The First Lady looks forward to a full recovery so she can continue her work on behalf of children everywhere.”
An embolization is a minimally invasive treatment that blocks one or more blood vessels or abnormal vascular channels.
A spokeswoman for the First Lady declined to offer more details on her condition, but said the 48-year-old is recovering.
“She’s doing great. She’s in good spirits,” Stephanie Grisham told the Post.
President Trump stayed behind in the White House, officials said, since his travel to the hospital would have meant a press pool would have camped out during the private medical procedure.
Trump kept a light schedule Monday with no public events and was planning to visit his wife.
“The president spoke with the First Lady before the procedure, and the president has spoken with the doctor after the procedure,” a White House source told the Post.
It’s unsurprising the East Wing kept her medical condition private until after the procedure.
She largely stayed away from the campaign trail during her husband’s historic run for the White House, but just recently has taken on a more public role.
The first lady held her first major solo event Monday at the White House Rose Garden to unveil her “Be Best” initiative. It focuses on children’s health and combating cyberbullying and opioid abuse.
Later in the week, she and the president greeted the freed American hostages in the middle of the night for their victorious arrival from North Korea at Joint Base Andrews.
It’s been more than a decade since a First Lady had an extended hospital stay while in office.
In 1987, Nancy Reagan underwent a mastectomy to remove her cancerous left breast. President Ronald Reagan visited her at Bethesda Naval Hospital where he reportedly told her. “’Honey, I know you don’t feel like dancing. So let’s hold hands.”
First lady Laura Bush had surgery in 2007 at George Washington University Hospital to treat pinched nerves in her neck. She returned to the White House after the 2 ½ hour procedure. President George W. Bush was traveling abroad and at the time and called his wife from Air Force One.
Melania Trump enjoys widespread popularity and the news of her sudden health condition drew a quick outpouring of well-wishes.
“Sincere wishes for her speedy recovery,” Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) said on Twitter.
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