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Doctor says Maradona improving, to remain hospitalized for few more days

Diego Maradona is making progress from a bout of hepatitis blamed on alcohol abuse and will remain hospitalized for at least a few more days.

The 46-year-old soccer great remained in stable condition at a private clinic, where he has been undergoing treatment since his admission Friday.

Maradona's "favorable" progress was Wednesday's latest medical update by Los Arcos Sanatorium in Buenos Aires.

Alfredo Cahe, Maradona's personal physician, told Argentina's Radio Continental on Wednesday that doctors are waiting for his liver tests to normalize.

"Diego is being kept hospitalized because of the hepatitis and will remain a few more days until the (liver) tests ... are completely normal," Cahe said.

Maradona's hospital stay is his second in less than a month.

Maradona was taken to another Buenos Aires clinic on March 28, hospitalized for 13 days when doctors first reported the hepatitis they blamed on alcohol abuse.

After his release from the private Guemes clinic last week, Maradona spent less than 72 hours on the outside before he returned to the emergency room complaining of strong abdominal pains on Friday.

His latest hospitalization was the eighth in a decade for the 1986 World Cup hero in a decade. In 2000 and 2004 he was reported near death with heart problems blamed on a cocaine addiction he said he later surmounted.

Los Arcos has said Maradona is being treated by a team of doctors, nutritionists and psychologists. It also said the team support would prepare Maradona and his relatives for his "continued treatment once he is released."

During a storied 20-year career marked by numerous titles, he was heralded as one of the greatest in the sport and in a category with Brazil's Pele. He retired in 1997.

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