Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) has been upgraded to “fair” condition as he continues to recover from a major stroke.
Kirk, 52, suffered a stroke Jan. 21 as a result of a torn carotid artery, and since then, he has undergone two surgeries to relieve swelling on the brain. The Illinois Republican is “alert, talking and responding well to questions,” according to a statement by Dr. Richard Fessler, Kirk’s neurosurgeon at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago.
“Sen. Kirk’s recovery is continuing,” Fessler said. “He is alert, talking and responding well to questions. He has been upgraded to fair condition, and we are very pleased with his progress.”
Doctors have said from the onset that Kirk likely would regain full mental and language skills, but his physical prognosis is unclear, with the possibility of permanent damage to the left side of his body.
The statement did not indicate when Kirk will be released from the hospital.
Former Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., candidate for U.S. Senate in New Hampshire, holds his hand over his heart during the singing of the national anthem as he waits to take the stage for his town hall campaign rally with Sen. John McCain at the Pinkerton Academy in Derry, N.H., on Monday, Aug. 18, 2014.