Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

3/14/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

New pope had one lung removed while still young

Pope Francis, the new pope, only has one lung. One of his lungs was removed at the age of 20 on account of illness. This condition is not believed to hinder any of his duties of the church, medical authorities believe, as long as he takes steps from contracting pneumonia.

The new pope hasn't limited his exposure to the infirm. Before Easter in 1999, the future Pope Francis washed the feet of 12 AIDS patients in a local hospital.

The new pope hasn't limited his exposure to the infirm. Before Easter in 1999, the future Pope Francis washed the feet of 12 AIDS patients in a local hospital.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/14/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Health

Keywords: Francis I, tuberculosis, lung removal, pneumonia, infirm


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Blair Marshall, chief of thoracic surgery at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital in Washington says that the only threat the 76-year-old pontiff might face is from pneumonia.

The amount of lung function at birth well exceeds what the average person needs, Marshall says. Recent scientific reports suggest the lung is able to partially regenerate when it's damaged at an early age. Marshall says that the new pope's lung issue shouldn't restrict his travel schedule or his ability to perform the high- stress role of leading the church.

"He's had several decades to adjust to this and his other lung has taken over," Marshall said in a telephone interview. "He's been functioning well for decades and should have no limitations. The only risk would be if he gets pneumonia."

Lung infections today are almost never treated with surgery. In the mid-1950s, however, doctors didn't have widespread access to antibiotics that are available now, and thus removing the lung was often the best option.

There has been no specific reason given for the pope's partial lung removal. The young Jorge Mario Bergoglio may have had tuberculosis or necrotizing pneumonia, where a bacterium destroys the lung tissue, Marshall said.

In some cases, a chronic illness may trigger so much inflammation that antibiotics traveling through the bloodstream can't reach the site of the infection.

A pulmonologist and co-director of the Cleveland Clinic Asthma Center in Ohio Sumita Khatri says that the damaged portion may be removed to stop the disease from spreading.

"This must have been a very difficult infection and he wasn't responding to treatment," she said in a telephone interview. "He was young and I expect rather healthy. It seems like by removing this infection, anything that could have become a chronic problem may very well have been cured and poses no risk to him now."

The fact that only part of a lung was taken out, rather than the entire organ as earlier reports suggested, is even more reassuring, Khatri said.

Losing just a portion of one lung shouldn't carry any restrictions. "A whole lot of people get a portion of their lung removed and do just fine," she said. "His experience for the past 50 years more than tells us that he has lung enough for the job."

The new pope hasn't limited his exposure to the infirm. Before Easter in 1999, Bergoglio washed the feet of 12 AIDS patients in a local hospital. The next year he washed the feet of 12 prison inmates. He has done the same thing every year since, with members of different social groupings.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for August 2014
Refugees:
That refugees, forced by violence to abandon their homes, may find a generous welcome and the protection of their rights.
Oceania: That Christians in Oceania may joyfully announce the faith to all the people of that region.



Comments


More Health

HEALTH DISASTER: Is nearly half of all Americans destined to contract diabetes? Watch

Image of The irony of the situation is that Americans are generally living longer, which is a factor in their increased lifetime chance of developing type 2 diabetes. Americans are also not dying in the same proportions that they were, because of better treatment.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Has the United States reached the tipping point with diabetes and obesity? A shocking new study claims that nearly HALF of all Americans, if trends continue, will develop type 2 diabetes in the near future. Public Health England, in their most recent report ... continue reading


First large-scale shipment of new malaria drug shipped out Watch

Image of The recent shipment marks a new phase in the fight against the mosquito-borne disease.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Just as virulent - as far more easily transmitted than Ebola, malaria is making new inroads to populations in sub-Saharan Africa. In response, French drug maker Sanofi has announced the delivery of large-scale batches of an antimalarial drug made using ... continue reading


Very accurate colon cancer in-home detection kit approved by FDA Watch

Image of  The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a new at-home, DNA-based stool test that screens for colorectal cancer with more than 90 percent accuracy.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Screening for colon cancer is frequently arduous and invasive. Patients need to fast prior to a colonoscopy, and the colonoscopy itself be highly uncomfortable and not always accurate. There's now good news for those at risk. The U.S. Food and Drug ... continue reading


You'll think twice before you put this dangerous chemical back in your mouth! Watch

Image of Colgate's Total brand of toothpaste contains the chemical triclosan, which has been proven to cause disruptions in the endocrine system in mice and rats.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A top-selling toothpaste uses the chemical triclosan which has been linked to cancer-cell growth and disrupted development in animals, and regulators are still reviewing whether or not it's safe to pt in soap, cutting boars and toys, while many consumer companies ... continue reading


New diabetes drug could help us all: Found effective in preventing cancer Watch

Image of Scientists who studied more than 180,000 people found a

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

According to a new study, a drug widely prescribed to treat type 2 diabetes could help us all live longer. Said drug, metformin, which controls glucose levels, may also stave off cardiovascular disease and cancer, regardless if the person is diabetic. LOS ... continue reading


Mutated gene increases women's chance for breast cancer by threefold Watch

Image of Doctors also could recommend more aggressive surveillance for breast cancer, such as annual mammograms or MRI breast screening.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A new study has found that mutated versions of a gene called PALB2 can dramatically increase a woman's risk of breast cancer. Researchers say that women carrying the PALB2 mutation have a one in three chance of developing breast cancer by the age of 70. LOS ... continue reading


WAS WORLD'S THROAT CUT? Ebola vaccine research was earlier abandoned Watch

Image of It must also be noted that while the National Institutes of Health and the U.S. government often fund the early animal safety and efficacy testing of a vaccine, pharmaceutical companies typically fund the human clinical trials to take a drug or vaccine to market.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

With increasing fears of the Ebola virus in West Africa and elsewhere, world governments are now frantically trying to contain the disease. What is not widely known is the fact that there had been work on finding a vaccine for Ebola four years ago, that was ... continue reading


PLAGUE STRIKES HOME: At least six people tested for Ebola in U.S. Watch

Image of Said individual, who has recently traveled to West Africa where the current outbreak is taking place is said to be under

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

At least six people within the continental United States have been tested for the dreaded Ebola virus, the deadly hemorrhagic disease tearing through West Africa. While all six people tested negative, the states in which these people were from remains a tightly ... continue reading


NEW THERAPY: Will chemotherapy be rendered obsolete in 20 years' time? Watch

Image of Genome sequencing will help drug companies design medicines that can successfully target the tumor, according to Professor Jeremy Farrar, director of the Wellcome Trust, which is part of the project.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Chemotherapy is regime that many cancer patients undergo. Many feel that the cure is at times worse than the disease: Weeks of nausea, fatigue, pain and disorientation. Now, drugs that target cancer without harming healthy cells that trigger harmful side ... continue reading


COUNTDOWN TO GLOBAL INFECTION: Hunt is on for 30,000 Ebola carriers worldwide Watch

Image of The father of three, Patrick Sawyer became the first American to die from the Ebola virus.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

With the death of 40-year-old Patrick Sawyer, an American who contracted Ebola while caring for his sister with the virus, the hunt is on for people who may have been in contact. Officials hope to head of the deadly virus off at the pass - before it is too late. ... continue reading


All Health News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ezekiel 34:1-11
1 The word of Yahweh was addressed to me as ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 23:1-3, 3-4, 5, 6
1 [Psalm Of David] Yahweh is my shepherd, I lack ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 20:1-16
1 'Now the kingdom of Heaven is like a landowner ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for August 20th, 2014 Image

St. Bernard of Clairvaux
August 20: St. Bernard, Abbot and Doctor of the Church St. Bernard was born ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter