Brazil’s President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is in “stable” condition a day after undergoing hip surgery, and began physical therapy Saturday morning, his doctors announced.
The 77-year-old leader widely known as Lula “spent the night in a stable state, walked in the morning and began physical therapy” in his hospital room in Brasilia, a medical bulletin said.
Doctors said Friday that the hip replacement surgery had gone off “without complications” and that Lula could probably leave the hospital no later than Tuesday.
While he will likely need a walker to get around at first, the image-conscious Lula has said he will not be photographed “with a walker or on crutches. You will see me handsome, as always.”
The veteran leftist politician will have to put a hold on the busy schedule of foreign trips he has maintained since taking office in January.
While he’ll be able to “work normally,” Lula will have to stay put in Brasilia for at least four weeks, doctors said.
At the same time, Lula’s personal physician Roberto Kalil Filho said the head of state should be able to travel to the UN climate conference in Dubai in late November.
That session holds particular importance for Lula, a self-proclaimed champion of the environment who has promised to end Amazon deforestation by 2030.
Lula, a former trade union leader, was previously president from 2003 to 2010. Last year he defeated far-right president Jair Bolsonaro in elections in a stunning return to power.
He has survived previous health problems: a bout with throat cancer in 2011, vocal-cord surgery last November and, last March, a case of pneumonia.
©️ Agence France-Presse