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Kennedy home after brief hospital visit

Senator Ted Kennedy is resting at home, according to his staff.  The Massachusetts Democrat was taken to the hospital yesterday after suffering what's being described as a "minor seizure."
Kennedy Hospital
Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., speaking Tuesday in Hyannis Port, Mass., was taken by ambulance to a hospital Friday after complaining of feeling ill. He has been in treatment for brain cancer.Stephan Savoia / AP
/ Source: The Associated Press

Senator Ted Kennedy is resting at home, his staff said on Saturday.

The Massachusetts Democrat has brain cancer and Friday suffered what is being described as a "minor seizure." He was taken by ambulance to a hospital near his Cape Cod vacation home Friday after complaining of feeling ill, but was back home a few hours later.

A statement issued by his office attributes the seizure to a change in medications.

A 911 call from the Kennedy compound in Hyannis Port came around 5 p.m., said Barnstable police Sgt. Ben Baxter. Kennedy was taken to Cape Cod Hospital and was "alert and responsive" during the trip, Baxter said.

The 76-year-old Kennedy had a seizure in May and underwent surgery in June for a malignant brain tumor. He has been steadily increasing his public activity since undergoing six weeks of chemotherapy and radiation treatment, but he remains prone to seizures in part because of the location of his tumor.

Senator John Kerry says his fellow Massachusetts Democrat was well and had told him he intended to watch Friday night's presidential debate between John McCain and Barack Obama.

Kennedy had told reporters visiting his Hyannis Port home on Tuesday that he was actively following the presidential race. "I'm going to be following it particularly next Friday," the senator said with a laugh.

First public appearance
He received a visit that day from Chilean President Michelle Bachelet at his home in his first public appearance since he gave a surprise speech in late August at the Democratic National Convention.

Bachelet presented the senator with her country's highest civilian award — the Order to the Merit of Chile — in recognition of his opposition to the country's 1973 government overthrow and his work to cut off military aid to dictator Augusto Pinochet.

At the meeting, the senator stumbled momentarily as he tried to walk on the thick grass, but he quickly regained his balance. While he didn't take questions from reporters, he departed from his prepared text to point out landmarks to Bachelet and tell a story about a friend in the crowd.

"There's a wonderful relationship between our family and the sea that goes back a long time," he said as he pointed to Nantucket Sound and the mooring where his schooner "Mya" rocked in the waves.

In early September, Kennedy announced he would not return to the Senate until January, but he has since held videoconferences with his staff and members of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, which he leads.

Kennedy surprised his colleagues in July when he made a surprise return to Capitol Hill to vote on a Medicare bill.