“She will undergo a procedure [Thursday] at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center to remove the object,” LaRosa said. “The President will join her.”
The first lady’s procedure, LaRosa said late Thursday, was “to flush out debris from a puncture wound.” It still wasn’t clear what object had caused the wound — A shell? A piece of broken glass? — even "after inspection of the wound by medical staff,” he said. But the procedure was “successful” and the wound is clean and free of infection. “It is anticipated that it will heal nicely,” he said.
The first lady was in Hawaii to tour a pop-up coronavirus vaccination clinic at a high school in Waipahu and to attend a barbecue with 75 service members at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. It was the final stretch of her five-day trip to cheer on Team USA at the Tokyo Olympics — a trip that started with vaccination-related events in Anchorage, and ended with the trip to Hawaii.
Biden, 70, made no complaints about issues with her foot at the events or during the flight back to Joint Base Andrews. She even came back to the cabin to greet members of the press pool and thank them for their work on the trip.
After meeting with lawmakers about immigration, the president left the White House in Marine One just after 7 p.m. to be at the first lady’s side. “I’m late for a very important date” he joked, after jogging up to reporters. While at the hospital he walked outside to his SUV for about ten minutes to make a phone call. He and the first lady left the hospital at about 9:45 p.m. to return to the White House.
The president, too, had a foot injury not long after he was elected. He twisted his ankle and got several fractures in his right foot while playing with his German shepherd, Major, in late November 2020.
Accompanying each other to medical appointments is not uncommon for the first couple. In 2008, Biden went with his wife as she got a root canal. He was in the dentist’s office when Barack Obama, after a six-week vetting process, called to ask if Biden would be his running mate.
In April, President Biden accompanied the first lady to an outpatient center near George Washington University, where she underwent what the White House said was “a common medical procedure.”
“The first lady tolerated the procedure well,” communications director Elizabeth Alexander said at the time.
The president had just been elected to the Senate in December 1972 when he lost his first wife, Neilia Biden, and his 1-year-old daughter, Naomi, in a car crash. He refused to leave the hospital where his badly injured toddler sons Beau and Hunter Biden were being treated, and was sworn into office from their hospital room. He was also at Beau’s hospital bedside when he died of brain cancer in 2015 at age 46.