Sava said he was able to respond to family members while still under sedation, but that Scalise will have to remain in the hospital for "a considerable period of time", including for further operations and rehabilitation.
"I feel a lot more confident and a lot more optimistic than I did two, three days ago", Sava said. His risk of death is "substantially lower" than it was when he was admitted to the hospital on Wednesday, and "I think that an excellent recovery is a good possibility", Sava said. Hodgkinson died after being shot by police. Mr Scalise, 51, sustained injuries to internal organs, broken bones and severe bleeding after being shot in his left hip on Wednesday morning on a baseball field in a Washington suburb. They say he is able to communicate through notes, and signed the game ball from Friday's congressional baseball game.
Doctors say Rep. Steve Scalise (skuh-LEES') remains in critical condition at a Washington hospital but is improving.
He said that "there are hundreds of fragments" of the bullet still in Scalise's body, but that there is more risk associated with finding them than there is benefit of taking them out of him. Yesterday, two more procedures were done: a surgery to fix abdominal damage, and an orthopedic surgery to fix his broken leg. Sava would not be specific about Scalise's internal injuries, saying he was trying to preserve some of the Congressman's privacy.
"When he arrived he was in critical condition with an imminent risk of death", Sava said, adding that the Louisiana lawmaker is expected to be in the hospital for weeks.
Medical staff also have removed a tube that had been inserted into Scalise's abdomen to prevent fluid from going into his lungs while he was sedated, said the sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to comment on the congressman's medical status.
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The White House maintained the issue was one of national security, and the order states the countries involved "sponsor or shelter terrorism".
Brett Horton, Scalise's chief of staff, read a statement from Scalise's wife on Friday, thanking everyone "for the incredible amount of prayers and warm wishes we've received since Wednesday's events".
Law enforcement officials proceeded Friday with their investigation of the attack at a suburban Virginia park, including examining Hodgkinson's social media activities and his home in Belleville, Illinois.
On Friday, the Federal Bureau of Investigation identified the guns found at the scene of the shooting as a 9 mm handgun and a 7.62-caliber rifle.
Also suffering relatively minor injuries were two Capitol Police officers, David Bailey and Crystal Griner, and House GOP aide Zack Barth.
Lobbyist Matt Mika was shot multiple times and remains hospitalized.