Ailing Pope Francis may need a miracle to keep from becoming crippled!
That’s the opinion of doctors who examined photos of the wheelchair-bound pontiff.
The 85-year-old Catholic leader has been complaining of agonizing pain in his right knee since January, and he was forced to skip serving Mass during Holy Week this year.
On April 28, he apologized to a crowd of pilgrims for remaining seated on the Vatican balcony, saying, “This knee is not finished healing, and I cannot stand for long.”
While Francis blames the pain on an “inflamed ligament,” papal observers fear something far worse.
“This is osteoarthritis in the knee,” notes Rome’s Dr. Andrea Capi. “[It’s] a degenerative condition where the cartilage lining the joint wears away and becomes deformed.”
New York–based Dr. Stuart Fischer says the condition can be crippling — and anti-inflammatory medications used to treat the ailment can cause ulcers, hypertension and other side effects “very dangerous for a man his age.
“If it has deteriorated too far, it can require the complete reconstruction of the architecture of the knee.”
Fischer explains that while surgery may help relieve the pain, “he may never regain the ability to walk normally again.”