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Silvio Berlusconi loses pint of blood after attack by "mental patient"
12-14-2009, 08:15 PM, (This post was last modified: 12-14-2009, 08:16 PM by ---.)
Silvio Berlusconi loses pint of blood after attack by "mental patient"
Silvio Berlusconi loses pint of blood after attack by mental patient
Nick Pisa, in Rome

[Image: silvioAP-415.jpg]

Silvio Berlusconi lost just under a pint of blood after being hit by a disturbed man wielding a souvenir statuette, doctors said today.

The Italian prime minister, 73, spent the night in hospital after the attack by Massimo Tartaglia, 42, and suffered a broken nose, broken teeth and split lips.

Medical staff said he was complaining of a severe headache and having trouble eating. He was being kept in hospital for further observation for at least another 24 hours.

Doctors at the San Raffaele hospital said he had lost 500ml (0.8 pint) of blood after his lips and gum were split.

Mr Berlusconi was struck yesterday as he greeted people after a rally outside the Duomo cathedral in Milan on Sunday.

Today his attacker was in the city's San Vittore prison, being held for aggravated premeditated assault.

The Italian premier has taken calls from French president Nicolas Sarkozy and Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin - both friends of his - and has had a message of sympathy from Gordon Brown.

His personal doctor, Alfredo Zangrillo, said: "He had a peaceful if somewhat painful night. He is having trouble eating because of the pain to his mouth and he is also suffering from a severe headache. He has a broken nose and two broken teeth and cuts to his lips and gum.

"He is being treated with painkillers and antibiotics but at this stage there is no need for surgery. The nose will have to be reset and he lost half a litre of blood from the wounds to his lips and gums.

"His condition is worse than we thought so he will be kept in for observations but we are not unduly concerned."

Tartaglia had been carrying a canister of pepper spray. Police searched his home in Cesano Boscone on the outskirts of Milan. They said he had been in and out of mental hospitals for more than 10 years.

His father Alessandro, who runs an electrical firm where his son works, said: "I called the hospital to see how Berlusconi was and to express my shock and dismay.

"My son has been in and out of psychiatric clinics for nearly 18 years. His brain isn't working properly and I think something just flipped."

[Image: SerpentsAmongUsBeriscHome.jpg]

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