ROME — Doctors trying to determine whether Pope John Paul II will need surgery found some "modest swelling" of his abdomen during examinations Monday but said it was too early to make a firm diagnosis.
John Paul, 72, entered the hospital Sunday after experiencing intestinal problems.
Dr. Corrado Manni, chief anesthesiologist at Gemelli Clinic, stressed that until all tests are done, no decision on treatment, including possible surgery, will be made.
Earlier in the day, when pressed about the Pope's condition, Manni said: "In medicine, everything can be serious and nothing can be serious."
Manni also said it is unlikely that the trouble is linked to a gunshot wound suffered by the pontiff during a 1981 assassination attempt.
"If this were something tied to the shooting, it would have occurred two, three, four years after the event, not, I think, 11 years after," Manni said.
However, Vatican spokesman Joaquin Navarro said Sunday that a link could not be ruled out until all tests were done.
The Gemelli Clinic is the same hospital where the Pope was rushed for surgery when he was shot in the abdomen by a Turkish gunman in St. Peter's Square on May 13, 1981.