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Last Updated: Sunday, 22 April 2007, 14:02 GMT 15:02 UK
Maradona treated for alcoholism
An altar in tribute to Maradona in Naples
Maradona's fans around the world have been following events closely
Argentine football great Diego Maradona has been transferred from hospital to a private psychiatric clinic in Buenos Aires for treatment for alcoholism.

Dr Alfredo Cahe, Maradona's personal doctor, said the 46-year-old had chosen to go to the specialist clinic.

Maradona has spent much of the past month in hospital with acute toxic hepatitis related to alcohol abuse.

Maradona, who led Argentina to victory in the 1986 World Cup, has previously battled cocaine addiction and obesity.

Fans have been watching Maradona's health with growing concern since he was admitted to hospital on 28 March, spending two weeks undergoing treatment.

He was discharged only to be taken to hospital two days later, suffering from strong abdominal pains.

Last week, Dr Cahe suggested doctors had persuaded Maradona to undergo alcohol abuse rehabilitation at a psychiatric treatment centre.

The former footballer had realised how serious his condition was and how alcohol was affecting him, Dr Cahe said.

Problems

Maradona is now at the private Avril Clinic which specialises in treating addictions.

Diego Maradona gives his thumb up to fans at La Bombonera stadium, 18 March, 2007
Maradona seen in public just a week before his latest health crisis
Dr Cahe said neither he nor the clinic would discuss Maradona's stay there.

Maradona's latest health crisis follows years of ill health and problems on and off the field.

In 1991 he was banned from playing football for 15 months after failing a drugs test. He tested positive again for banned drugs at the 1994 World Cup in the US.

He retired from competitive sport in 1997. In 2000, and again in 2004, he collapsed with heart problems and was taken to hospital.

Two years ago, he had a stomach stapling operation. He lost 30kg (66lb) and began playing football again.

But recently, Argentine media reported he had put on weight and was considering another slimming cure.

In March, Argentina's central bank said it was investigating him for alleged financial irregularities.




SEE ALSO
Diego Maradona back in hospital
13 Apr 07 |  Americas
Maradona released from hospital
11 Apr 07 |  Americas
Inquiry into Maradona's finances
07 Mar 07 |  Americas
Five days with Diego
30 Apr 06 |  Football
Maradona arrested at Rio airport
22 Dec 05 |  Americas
Maradona stands by 'Hand of God'
23 Aug 05 |  Americas

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