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Pope Benedict recovering from wrist fracture

The pontiff is in a cast after a fall in his Alpine vacation chalet. Doctors expect no long-term effects.

July 18, 2009|Associated Press

AOSTA, ITALY — Pope Benedict XVI waved reassuringly to well-wishers outside a hospital Friday where he underwent surgery to set his right wrist, fractured in a fall at his Alpine vacation chalet.

The 82-year-old pope's accident was the first significant medical issue of his 4-year-old papacy, but doctors said he would suffer no long-term effects and would be able to return to playing piano and writing once the wrist heals. His cast will be removed in a month.

The pontiff's first public appearance of his mountain holiday is scheduled for Sunday in Ivrea, the hometown of his No. 2, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, where he is to deliver his traditional Sunday blessing.

Details of the fall were not given, but Dr. Pierluigi Berti, director of the Umberto Parini hospital, said it was accidental and not the result of any health condition.

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