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Mystery substance causes surgery postponements at Mpls. VA hospital

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Minneapolis' Veterans Affairs Medical Center has had to postpone most of its surgeries scheduled for this week following the discovery of an "unidentified substance."

In a statement given to FOX 9 , the hospital in southeast Minneapolis said the substance was found in sterilizing equipment, and that it won't be able to resume normal operations until the substance is identified and the equipment cleaned.

As a result, "most surgeries" set to take place during this week will be put back, with the center saying urgent and emergency procedures will be done at the University of Minnesota or other local hospitals.

Samples of the material have been sent to a laboratory for analysis, the Star Tribune reports, which adds that some surgeries still can take place at the VA center using sterilizers that were not affected.

KARE 11 reports that patients whose surgeries are being delayed will be contacted by VA officials on Wednesday.

The medical center has not said how many surgeries have been postponed.

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