US Defense Secretary Austin Leaves Hospital, Returns Home


By C. Todd Lopez

After a two-week stay at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, Maryland, Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III returned home on Monday, said Thursday. The secretary said he expects in the short term to continue his recovery at home while also performing his duties as the defense secretary. 

“I’m grateful for the excellent care I received at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and want to thank the outstanding doctors and nursing staff for their professionalism and superb support,” Austin said in a statement released earlier this week. “I also am thankful and appreciative for all the well wishes I received for a speedy recovery. Now, as I continue to recuperate and perform my duties from home, I’m eager to fully recover and return as quickly as possible to the Pentagon.” 

According to doctors at Walter Reed, Austin underwent surgery Dec. 22 to treat prostate cancer, which had been detected earlier in the month following a routine screening. On Jan. 1, the secretary was re-admitted to Walter Reed with complications related to that earlier surgery. 

During a briefing Wednesday, Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder, said Austin’s doctors have said the secretary is expected to make a full recovery. They also noted  that in relation to the cancer, early diagnosis and treatment led to an excellent prognosis. Austin will continue to undergo physical therapy while at home. 

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DoD News publishes news from the US Defense Department.

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