UPDATED: After years of being bothered by neck pain, Crown Princess Mette-Marit checked into Norway’s National Hospital (Rikshospital) this week for an operation. The Royal Palace announced Wednesday afternoon that the surgery was “to remove a herniated disc and alleviate pressure on the nerves.” It was performed on Friday and doctors reported it went well.
Mette-Marit, who turned 40 in August, has been on sick leave since early October and it was extended until well into December. Her doctors decided that surgery was unavoidable because she’s suffering severe pain.
Palace officials reported that the doctors recommended the operation be performed as soon as possible, for medical reasons.
“We had kept hoping that she could avoid an operation, and have therefore waited as long as we could,” palace spokesman Marianne Hagen told news bureau NTB. “She has such severe pain right now that an operation was absolutely necessary.”
It’s expected that she’ll remain at Rikshospitalet for several days after the surgery and then go into rehabilitation. Palace officials said it was too early to determine whether her sick leave will need to be extended further.
The need for surgery prompted Mette-Marit’s husband, Crown Prince Haakon, to cancel a planned visit to Atlanta, Georgia this week to attend a Global Dignity event, according to a press release from the palace.
This story was updated on Friday afternoon, November 15.