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Prince Philip Operation Seeks Answers to Abdominal Issues, Royals Say

Image: Prince Philip Operation Seeks Answers to Abdominal Issues, Royals Say June 6, 2013 photo of police officers outside the London Clinic, London where Duke of Edinburgh has been admitted for an exploratory operation on his abdomen.

By Ken Mandel   |   Friday, 07 Jun 2013 09:03 AM

Prince Philip, the husband of Great Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, is in a London hospital "for an exploratory operation," Buckingham Palace said Thursday.

The Duke of Edinburgh, who turns 92 on June 10, is expected to remain hospitalized for as long as two weeks after the pre-planned surgery. He's being treated after "abdominal investigations."

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"He's in good spirits," a palace spokeswoman told the Associated Press, but declined to elaborate when the decision was made to operate. The London Clinic, a longtime care facility for royals, declined to comment.

Philip, the father of Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward, attended a Buckingham Palace garden party Thursday hosted by his wife, then was driven by car to the hospital, according to the Press Association. On Tuesday, he and other members of the royal family attended a service at Westminster Abbey to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II's coronation.

The prince also spent nearly a week in the hospital after a recurrence of a bladder infection, as well as Christmas 2011 after being treated for a blocked coronary artery.

Both he and Elizabeth II have cut back on long trips overseas in recent years, though they maintain active public schedules inside their home country. The queen is expected to keep her scheduled Friday engagements, which include a visit to the new BBC studios in central London.

Philip is the Commonwealth realms' longest-serving companion and oldest spouse of a reigning British monarch. He was born in Greece into the Greek and Danish royal families, but his family was exiled when he was a child after the 1922 overthrow of his brother, King Constantine I.

He joined the British Royal Navy when he was 18, in 1939, and began corresponding with then 13-year-old Princess Elizabeth. After the war, he was given permission to marry Elizabeth, which he did in 1947.

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