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Barry Returns to Hospital After Complications

D.C. Council member Marion Barry.
D.C. Council member Marion Barry. (Susan Biddle - Washington Post)

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By Hamil R. Harris
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, March 4, 2009; 5:00 PM

D.C. Council member Marion Barry (D) is expected to remain at Howard University Hospital until at least Friday because of complications related to his recent kidney transplant, his spokeswoman said today.

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Natalie Williams said at a news conference this afternoon that Barry experienced discomfort in his abdomen, which doctors told him was the result of air pockets near his new kidney and not a rejection of the organ.

Barry, who turns 73 on Friday, underwent seven-hour kidney transplant surgery on Feb. 20 at Howard. The Ward 8 Democrat had been scheduled to return to his council duties on Monday, less than two weeks after the procedure. But aides said early yesterday that doctors told Barry to get more rest before returning to work. He was readmitted to the hospital on Monday night. Williams said Barry expects to be released from the hospital by the weekend.

WRC-TV (Channel 4) first reported that Barry was back in the hospital.

The former four-term mayor, who had been on dialysis for the past few months, received a kidney from Kim Dickens, 47, a longtime friend.

Council member Harry Thomas (D-Ward 5), who was among several city leaders who attended a library opening in Takoma today, said that Barry needs to take time to heal.

"He's in my prayers," Thomas said. "He has to heal and healing takes time. He has to take time for himself."


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