Italy’s former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi was re-admitted to hospital on Friday for a scheduled medical checkup, just weeks after being discharged following a long stay.
Berlusconi, 86, left San Raffaele Hospital last month after six weeks of treatment for a lung infection linked to a chronic myelomonocytic leukaemia, a type of cancer that affects the white blood cells.
The San Raffaele hospital said the checks, which came earlier than planned, were not related to “any criticality or alarm” and responded “to clinical criteria of normal practice in medicine”.
Berlusconi has served as prime minister for three separate periods since and, although he does not have a direct role in government, his Forza Italia party is a member of Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni's right-wing coalition.
His health has deteriorated in recent years, with open-heart surgery in 2016 and numerous hospital admissions since contracting Covid three years ago.
“Come on, Silvio,” Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini, one of Berlusconi's main political allies, wrote in an Instagram post.
Mr Salvini said he had spoken with Berlusconi via telephone and asked for reassurance on his health.
During his previous hospitalisation, Berlusconi remained politically active, appearing in two video messages in which he looked frail but insisted he was ready to return to work.