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Brazil’s Lula undergoes vocal cord surgery

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Brazil’s president-elect Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva underwent surgery to remove a lesion from his vocal cords upon his return from a trip to Egypt and Portugal, a hospital in Sao Paulo said Monday.

The 77-year-old — with a trademark raspy voice after a bout of throat cancer a decade ago — was admitted on Sunday and has already been discharged after the “laryngoplasty,” the Syrian-Lebanese hospital said in a statement.

“Good morning. I am already home after a small procedure yesterday. Everything is sorted out. I am fine, have a good week,” Lula wrote on Telegram.

The hospital said that surgeons had carried out the “removal of a leukoplakia on the left vocal cord,” a white lesion detected by doctors during a routine medical exam on November 12.

Doctors noted there were no new tumors present. Lula was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2011, shortly after he left office following two presidential terms between 2003 and 2010.

He went into remission the following year after undergoing radiotherapy and chemotherapy.

Lula was elected for a third term as president last month, in a razor-thin victory over incumbent Jair Bolsonaro.

In his first trip abroad since the election, he traveled to the global climate summit COP27 in Egypt, and then to Lisbon, before returning to Brazil on Saturday.

Lula was a smoker for more than 50 years before quitting in 2010 after being hospitalized for high blood pressure.

His typically hoarse voice became notably more ragged throughout the long election campaign, and was at times barely audible.


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Agence France-Presse (AFP) is a French international news agency headquartered in Paris, France. Founded in 1835 as Havas, it is the world's oldest news agency.

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