• Kyodo

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Trying to make the Imperial family appear less aloof toward the public, Emperor Akihito has become more open about his health, in contrast to his father’s era, when such information was usually kept under wraps.

Although the handling of information surrounding medical care for an Imperial family member has changed with the times, so too has the type of treatment, with the Emperor opting for an invasive procedure — heart bypass surgery — that in a previous era may have been avoided.

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