BUENOS AIRES (AP):Doctors were siphoning blood from beneath President Cristina Fernandez's skull yesterday to relieve pressure on her brain two months after she suffered an unexplained head injury.
Experts described the procedure as generally low risk, and almost always having positive results. But the surgery on the 60-year-old, which involves drilling into the skull, worried many Argentines, who have struggled to imagine their country with anyone else at its centre.
The website of the Argentine presidency announced early yesterday that the surgery had begun, but hours later there was no official word on her progress. The hospital was sealed off, and all inquiries were referred to presidential spokesman Alfredo Scoccimarro, who did not answer his phones.
Dozens of her supporters gathered outside the Fundación Favaloro, one of Argentina's top cardiology hospitals, after keeping vigil there the night before. Some carried signs with messages such as 'Fuerza Cristina', urging her to show her strength.
Fernandez was diagnosed with "chronic subdural hematoma", or fluid trapped between the skull and brain.