Early this week, the White House revealed that first lady Melania Trump had been admitted to the hospital for a procedure to address a benign kidney condition. She had an embolization performed, which is a procedure that is meant to address issues like tumors and malfunctioning blood vessels through cutting off blood flow to the affected area.
The normally public spotlight-shy first lady took to social media this Wednesday to address her hospitalization, writing a message thanking well-wishers.
‘A sincere thank you to Walter Reed Medical Unit
@WRBethesda & to all who have send good wishes & prayers! I am feeling great & look forward to getting back home @WhiteHouse soon.’
As she indicated in her message, as of Wednesday, she remains in the hospital for a stay that one expert speaking to the Daily Beast said was curiously long; often, he explained, for a simple embolization procedure, patients aren’t even formally admitted to the hospital and it’s instead just performed as an outpatient procedure.
Nevertheless, exact details about the first lady’s condition have remained scarce. The president has addressed the issue only in vague terms on Twitter, first marking a visit to Walter Reed Medical Center, where she has been, and second offering a vague reassurance that her condition is good.
On Monday, when going to visit her, the president said that Melania was in “good spirits.”
The next day, the president added another message about the situation, writing:
‘Our great First Lady is doing really well. Will be leaving hospital in 2 or 3 days. Thank you for so much love and support!’
Although he only explicitly marked the occasion on Twitter once, the president is reported to have visited Melania in the hospital at least Monday through Wednesday at this point.
The relationship between the two of them has been perceived by many to have been fraying thanks to the president’s repeated scandals.
When Melania does leave the hospital, she will be returning to work, which she formally kicked off just recently, meant to bring awareness to issues of childhood well-being like the opioid crisis and cyberbullying. She has collected her efforts under the heading of the “Be Best” campaign.
In the meantime, the first lady’s communications director, Stephanie Grisham, has asked for privacy for Melania. When pressed about the length of Melania’s hospital stay by CNN this past Tuesday, Grisham commented:
‘I am not going to expand beyond the statement I put out. The first lady is in good spirits and she is resting. There are HIPAA laws to consider, but she also deserves personal privacy.’
There has long been a public perception of Melania as dedicated to privacy, something that’s been bolstered by various accounts of life inside the Trump administration. Perhaps supporting that perspective is the fact that it was only just recently that she formally unveiled a heading for her efforts as first lady to address causes of personal concern.
For now, she remains waiting to return to the White House following her surprise medical procedure earlier this week.
Check out Twitter’s response below.
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