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Doctors remove 5 polyps from Bush's colon

  • Story Highlights
  • Five small polyps found during procedure; "none worrisome," spokesman says
  • President reclaims powers transferred to vice president
  • Bush undergoes routine colonoscopy at Camp David
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WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Doctors removed five small polyps from President Bush's colon on Saturday, and "none appeared worrisome," a White House spokesman said.

The polyps were removed and sent to the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, for routine microscopic examination, spokesman Scott Stanzel said. Results are expected in two to three days.

All were small, less than a centimeter [half an inch] in diameter, he said.

Bush is in good humor, Stanzel said, and will resume his activities at Camp David.

During the procedure Vice President Dick Cheney assumed presidential power. Bush reclaimed presidential power at 9:21 a.m. after about two hours.

Doctors used "monitored anesthesia care," Stanzel said, so the president was asleep, but not as deeply unconscious as with a true general anesthetic.

He spoke to first lady Laura Bush -- who is in Midland, Texas, celebrating her mother's birthday -- before and after the procedure, Stanzel said.

Afterward, the president played with his Scottish terriers, Barney and Miss Beazley, Stanzel said. He planned to have lunch at Camp David and have briefings with National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley and White House Chief of Staff Josh Bolten, and planned to take a bicycle ride Saturday afternoon.

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Cheney, meanwhile, spent the morning at his home on Maryland's eastern shore, reading and playing with his dogs, Stanzel said. Nothing occurred that required him to take official action as president before Bush reclaimed presidential power.

The procedure was supervised by Dr. Richard Tubb, Bush's physician, and conducted by a multidisciplinary team from the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, the White House said.

Bush's last colonoscopy was in June 2002, and no abnormalities were found, White House spokesman Tony Snow said.

The president's doctor had recommended a repeat procedure in about five years.

A colonoscopy is the most sensitive test for colon cancer, rectal cancer and polyps, small clumps of cells that can become cancerous, according to the Mayo Clinic. Small polyps may be removed during the procedure.

Snow said on Friday that Bush had polyps removed during colonoscopies before becoming president.

Snow himself is undergoing chemotherapy for cancer that began in his colon and spread to his liver. Video Watch Snow talk about Bush's procedure and his own colon cancer »


"The president wants to encourage everybody to use surveillance," Snow said.

The American Cancer Society recommends that people without high risk factors or symptoms begin getting screened for signs of colorectal cancer at age 50. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

All About Colon CancerGeorge W. Bush

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