Bernie Sanders has undergone minor surgery for a hernia repair, according to his campaign staff, who were quick to stress he would be back at work within a day.
The elective procedure was carried out at George Washington University hospital in Washington on Monday, where the 74-year-old Vermont senator and 2016 Democratic candidate was treated as an outpatient.
In a brief statement, campaign spokesman Michael Briggs suggested Sanders would “resume his Senate duties on Tuesday”.
But there was no word from the campaign on whether recovery from the surgery would delay Sanders’ grueling campaign travel schedule, which has seen him crisscross early voting primary states in recent months as well as attend most Senate voting sessions.
Among the unusually old group of candidates standing in next year’s presidential elections, campaign aides have been quick to seek to dispel questions over their health.
Hillary Clinton, who saw negative rumours about her health spread by Republican adviser Karl Rove after suffering a blood clot from a fall in 2009, recently discussed her use of yoga to help get through a particularly gruelling congressional hearing.
Clinton, who will be 69 next October, would be the second oldest president to take office – only Ronald Reagan, 69 and 349 days at inauguration, was older.
Meanwhile, Jeb Bush, 62, took the unusual step in October of releasing a full medical report from his doctor – in the style of a sitting president.
It showed him healthy, despite a family history of heart disease, but confirmed that the younger Bush brother had recently lowered his blood pressure through “intensification of exercise, careful eating habits and loss of weight”.
His well-proportioned New Jersey rival Chris Christie is another Republican known to have embarked on a major weight loss campaign before starting his bid for president.
Meanwhile Barack Obama recently took the unusual step of responding to rumours that he had taken up smoking again, insisting that he had not had a single cigarette since passing the Affordable Care Act into law in 2010.