Russian president Boris Yeltsin this morning left the heart clinic where he had heart bypass surgery on November 5 and moved back to Moscow’s Central Clinical Hospital to continue his convalescence. Yeltsin knows the hospital well and is said to be more comfortable there than in the clinic. His doctors say that he is in some pain but is continuing to make strong progress and has already started to work on state documents. "I am happy to inform you that the operation was successful. I have returned to work," Yeltsin said in a statement distributed by his office yesterday. (AP, Itar-Tass, November 7; BBC, November 8)
The Russian heart surgeon who operated on Yeltsin, Renat Akchurin, says the president is recovering so quickly that he could be back at work in two weeks. (NTV, November 7) American cardiologist Michael DeBakey predicted Yeltsin would be "a new man." He said that the president would have to eat and drink in moderation for the rest of his life, but added that he had seen no medical evidence that Yeltsin was an alcoholic. (Reuter, November 7)
Yeltsin Calls for Unity, Renames Communist Holiday.