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Kevorkian hospitalized for pneumonia, kidney trouble

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • Kevorkian has a history of kidney ailments, his lawyer says
  • The assisted suicide advocate served an eight-year prison term

(CNN) -- Assisted-suicide advocate Jack Kevorkian has been hospitalized in Michigan for pneumonia and a kidney-related ailment, his attorney said Thursday.

The 82-year-old former pathologist has struggled with kidney problems for years and had checked into a hospital earlier this month for similar problems, his lawyer, Mayer Morganroth, told CNN. He checked back into Beaumont Hospital in the Detroit suburb of Royal Oak on Wednesday after suffering a relapse Wednesday night, Morganroth said.

"He has some testing to have done," Morganroth said Thursday on his way to the hospital. "He's a little tired, but he's doing all right," he added.

Officials at Beaumont Hospital could not comment, citing confidentiality policies and privacy clauses.

Kevorkian, dubbed "Dr. Death," made national headlines as a supporter of physician-assisted suicide and "right-to-die" legislation. He was charged with murder numerous times through the 1990s for helping terminally ill patients take their own lives.

He was convicted on second-degree murder charges in 1999 stemming from the death of a patient who suffered from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, commonly called Lou Gehrig's disease. He was paroled in 2007.

-- From CNN's Chris Boyette