Sat, Nov 18, 2006 - Page 5 News List

Suu Kyi's doctor visits, gives her a clean bill of health


Myanmar's detained democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi has received a visit from her personal physician, who gave her a clean bill of health after performing an ultrasound, a source close to her family said yesterday.

"Everything is fine," the source said when asked about her health.

The doctor performed the ultrasound at her home, the source said, in the first visit by her physician since August.

The medical check-up came just days after top UN envoy Ibrahim Gambari was allowed to meet with the 61-year-old Nobel peace laureate, who is under house arrest at her rambling lakeside home in Yangon.

After the meeting, Gambari urged Myanmar's military rulers to allow her doctor to make more regular visits.


Her doctor has not said why he wanted to use the ultrasound, which is used to examine a variety of internal organs, and can help diagnose heart conditions as well as gynecological problems.

Aung San Suu Kyi had a gynecological operation in 2003 and fell ill in June with stomach troubles. On that occasion, her doctor was allowed to treat her at her home.

Lwin, the spokesman for her National League for Democracy party, said that the doctor had visited her on Thursday.

"I heard he went to her house yesterday to give her a medical checkup and an ultrasound. I don't have any confirmation or any information on her health condition," said Lwin, who goes by one name.

Her doctor is the only person allowed periodic visits to Aung San Suu Kyi, who lives in the house with her maid.

In theory, the military allows the doctor to see her once a month, but in practice his visits are less frequent.

Two-year lapse

When Gambari paid his first visit to Aung San Suu Kyi in May, he was the first outsider allowed to see her in more than two years.

He met her again on Nov. 11 for one hour. The UN said that the woman known here simply as "The Lady" told him that she was in good health but wanted to receive more medical care.

The UN also released the first photographs of her seen in three years.

Wearing a traditional purple silk "longyi" dress with flower prints, the pro-democracy leader looked drawn and gave a modest smile as she posed for pictures with Gambari.

Aung San Suu Kyi has spent most of the last 17 years under house arrest.

Her latest period in detention began after a May 2003 attack on her convoy by junta-backed militia in the country's central region.

She was thrown into prison after the assault but, following a gynecological operation four months later, was allowed to return home -- again under house arrest.

Her NLD party won elections in 1990 in a landslide victory, but the military, which has ruled Myanmar since 1962, refused to recognize the result.

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