BREAKING: Illinois Senator Mark Kirk hospitalized after stroke

Marshall Cohen

U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) underwent “successful” surgery early Monday at Northwestern Memorial Hospital after suffering a stroke this weekend, his office said in a statement.

Kirk, 52, drove himself to Lake Forest Hospital on Saturday but was eventually transferred to Northwestern Memorial, where tests confirmed he suffered an ischemic stroke.

Dr. Richard Fessler, a neurosurgeon at the hospital, said in a news conference that he made the decision to operate on Kirk when the senator began to “deteriorate neurologically.” Surgeons relieved swelling around Kirk’s brain by removing a segment of his skull.

Kirk suffered a stroke to the right side of his brain, Fessler added.

“What that means is it will affect his ability to move his left arm and possibly his left leg,” Fessler said in the conference.

Fessler said Kirk’s prospects for “full mental recovery” were strong.

Kirk’s office added, “due to his young age, good health and the nature of the stroke, doctors are very confident in the Senator’s recovery over the weeks ahead.”

Check back later for more updates.

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