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As President Biden, 79, recovers from his recent diagnosis COVID-19some Americans may wonder about some of the other ailments that previous US presidents have battled over the years, many of which have been hidden from the public.
But first, a little more about Biden’s health.
The President recently stated during that he has cancer and … for a long time, Delaware had the highest cancer rate in the nation.”
This comment caused a great deal of confusion and discussion.
In a November 2021 memo summarizing Biden’s health, Dr. Kevin O’Connor, Biden’s physician for more than a decade, acknowledged that Biden had “several localized non-melanoma skin cancers removed by Mohs surgery before he began his presidency.”
Biden’s ambulatory gait is “noticeably stiffer and less fluid than a year or so ago.”
“These lesions were completely excised, with clear edges,” the report said, as recently noted by the Associated Press.
The same Nov. A 2021 memo on Biden’s health cited other issues the doctor was monitoring: an increase in the “frequency and severity” of coughing and coughing during Biden’s speech; and the fact that Biden’s ambulatory gait is “noticeably stiffer and less fluid than a year or so ago.”
His orthopedic history offered “several reasonable explanations” for this, the doctor noted.
The memo also noted that Biden had atrial fibrillation, a condition in which the heart beats slightly abnormally.
Here is a selection – not a complete list, to be sure – of some of the other health conditions American presidents have experienced in their lives.
John F. Kennedy’s Chronic Diseases
John F. Kennedy (JFK), the nation’s youngest president to die in office, suffered from many chronic illnesses throughout his life.
They were hidden from the public during his presidency so that he could maintain an image of youthful vitality, as noted by many sources and biographers.
Kennedy struggled with chronic back pain after a back injury while attending Harvard in 1937. This required several surgeries.
His “aura of vitality belied the fact that he was clearly unwell from an early age,” wrote physicians T. Glenn Pate, MD, and Justin T. Dowdy, MD, in an article in the Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine.
But John F. Kennedy’s most serious illness was Addison’s disease. endocrine state diagnosed in 1947 when he was 30 years old.
Common symptoms of Addison’s disease include fatigue, weight loss, and abdominal pain; however, the characteristic symptom is hyperpigmentation on exposed areas of the skin.
This is when the adrenal glands don’t produce enough of the stress hormone known as cortisol, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Common symptoms include fatigue, weight loss and abdominal pain; however, the characteristic symptom is hyperpigmentation on exposed areas of the skin.
When cortisol levels become low, it stimulates the anterior pituitary gland in the brain to release high levels of another hormone called adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH).
ACTH acts on skin cells known as melanocytes and produces high levels of melanin, causing a “bronze” skin tone.
“In a strange twist of fate, one of the symptoms of Addison’s disease, as well as a symptom of the steroids used to treat it, is hyperpigmentation, which may be the cause of Kennedy’s perpetual ‘tan’. his televised debate with Richard Nixon definitely marked,” History explained on its website.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR), our nation’s longest-serving president from 1933 to 1945, was diagnosed with: a paralyzing virus called polio in 1921, when he was 39, according to the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum.
“In the summer of 1921, Roosevelt was enjoying a day of sailing on his yacht when he suddenly fell overboard into the icy waters of the Bay of Fundy, which, ironically, paralyzed his body,” the Roosevelt Library explained on its website.
But the next day, he complained of lower back pain, so he went back into the water to ease the pain.
However, after swimming, he gradually began to show weakness in his legs and could not bear the weight for several days, according to the Roosevelt Library.
But it took several doctors to make the right diagnosis.
Dr. William Keane “insisted” that a blood clot in the lower part of his spinal cord was the cause of Roosevelt’s symptoms; however, a few days later, he said that the cause of Roosevelt’s symptoms was damage to the spinal cord.
Nevertheless, when Roosevelt did not feel better, he sought a second opinion. Aug. 25, 1921, Dr. Robert Lovett diagnosed Roosevelt with infantile paralysis, what is now known as polio, an infectious disease that mostly affects children under the age of five, according to the Roosevelt Library website.
He thought the political stress had weakened his immune system, making him a “victim of childhood paralysis” as an adult, according to the Roosevelt Library.
“If someone had polio as a child or young adult but retained or regained some or all of the movement of their weakened arms or legs, to the point of becoming athletic later on, they are at risk of becoming weaker in late adulthood,” the CDC noted.
“Lovett explained that in order for a person to fight polio, they must be in good emotional and physical condition and have a healthy immune system,” the Roosevelt Library added.
Roosevelt re-evaluated how he contracted the disease, remembering that he was often ill as a child.
He thought the political stress had weakened his immune system, making him a “victim of childhood paralysis” as an adult, the Roosevelt Library explained.
” [polio] The virus is transmitted from person to person and can infect a person’s spinal cord, causing paralysis,” the CDC said in a statement.
Most people do not develop symptoms; but about 25% of people develop flu-like symptoms that last two to five days and then go away. Less than 1% of people infected with the virus will develop more severe symptoms in the brain and spinal cord.
Roosevelt tried to hide his condition throughout his presidency so as not to appear “weak” to the American public. According to History, he asked the press not to take pictures of him walking or transferring from a car so that people wouldn’t know he was wheelchair-bound.
The doctor noticed that Woodrow Wilson, who took office as the nation’s 28th president in 1913, began experiencing drooping on one side of his mouth in 1919.
Later that year in his second term, Wilson found himself partially paralyzed when he awoke one day. Nevertheless, his wife Edith rallied around her husband to protect his administration from any public repercussions from his health fear.
“In essence, she acted as president, and the country remained in the dark about Wilson’s true state until his term ended in 1921,” says History magazine.
Vice President Thomas Marshall did not become president at that time because in 1919 he followed Article 2 of the Constitution, which stated that a vice president becomes president only in the event of “death, resignation, or inability to exercise the powers and duties of president.” specified office,” according to history.
The American Stroke Association encourages people to think “FAST” when they recognize the symptoms of a stroke.
25th amendment was later ratified in 1967, which established clearer rules for presidential succession due to disability.
The American Stroke Association encourages people to think “FAST” when they recognize the symptoms of a stroke. The acronym stands for drooping face, weakness of an arm on one side of the body, difficulty speaking, and time to call emergency services.
One president – after he left the White House – decided to inform the American people of his illness in a letter.
Reagan’s Alzheimer’s Diagnosis
“I was recently told that I am one of the millions of Americans who will suffer from Alzheimer’s,” he wrote in November. September 5, 1994, in a letter addressed to “My fellow Americans.”
“Opening our hearts, [Nancy and I] I hope this can contribute to greater awareness of this disease,” Reagan added.
“Perhaps this will contribute to a clearer understanding of the individuals and families affected,” the former president wrote in his much longer letter.