Sharon ‘stable’ after new lung infection reported
JERUSALEM – The hospital treating former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said Wednesday he was in stable condition two days after being put on antibiotics for double pneumonia.Sharon, 78, has been in a coma since suffering a massive stroke Jan. 4. He has since undergone several extensive brain operations to stop cerebral hemorrhaging, in addition to other relatively minor procedures.Tel Aviv’s Chaim Sheba Medical Center said Monday that new tests had revealed deterioration in Sharon’s brain function and infection in both lungs. His urine output had also decreased significantly and doctors were treating him with broad-spectrum antibiotics and steroids, the hospital said at the time.Asked for an update on Wednesday, Sheba spokeswoman Anat Dolev would not say if the treatment was continuing or if Sharon was responding.”There is no change that justifies a new statement,” she told The Associated Press. “His condition is stable.”After spending months in the Jerusalem hospital where he was initially treated, Sharon was transferred to the long-term care facility at Sheba hospital in May.He was rushed into intensive care July 26 for dialysis because his kidneys were failing. Hospital officials said they also noticed changes in his brain membrane.Sharon had an initial minor stroke in December and was put on blood thinners before suffering the severe brain hemorrhage in January.Sharon’s stroke came after he saw through his contentious plan to withdraw Israel from the Gaza Strip after 38 years. Just two months before the stroke, Sharon shook up the Israeli political map by bolting his hard-line Likud Party to form the centrist Kadima faction.After the stroke, Sharon’s successor, Ehud Olmert, led Kadima to victory in a March 28 vote and became prime minister.
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