Sen. Edward M. Kennedy walked out of the hospital on Wednesday after being diagnosed with a cancerous brain tumor, giving a thumbs up to well-wishers and kisses to his relatives before driving off for his Cape Cod home.
A square bandage at the back of his head marked the spot where doctors performed a biopsy Monday that led them to conclude the 76-year-old Massachusetts Democrat suffered from a malignant glioma. Experts say such tumors are almost always fatal.
Kennedy's dogs greeted him at the hospital door. Hospital workers and well-wishers greeted Kennedy with applause, which he acknowledged with a thumbs up. Before he and his wife, Vicki, got into a dark Chevrolet Suburban, he kissed his daughter, Kara, and his niece Caroline Kennedy.
Doctors announced Kennedy "has recovered remarkably quickly" from the brain biopsy. They said he will recuperate at his home over the Memorial Day weekend while the doctors await further test results and determine his treatment plan.
Doctors treating Massachusetts Senator Edward Kennedy say the 76-year-old Democrat has had no further seizures and "remains in good overall condition and is up and walking around the hospital."
Kennedy's doctors say he will stay in Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston for the next few days as they consider a course of treatment for his malignant brain tumor.
Additional testing is expected to determine the specific brain tumor type. The average survival rate ranges from less than a year for the most advanced and aggressive cancers to about five years for slower growing tumors.
White House press secretary Dana Perino says President Bush was "deeply saddened" when he heard of Kennedy's tumor. She adds that Bush will "keep Senator Kennedy in his prayers."