Ten Pres­i­dents Have Suf­fered Strokes

Wellness Update - - Health News -

MAY­WOOD, Ill. – Ten of the na­tion's 44 pres­i­dents likely suf­fered strokes dur­ing their pres­i­den­cies or af­ter leav­ing of­fice, ac­cord­ing to Dr. José Biller, a Loy­ola Univer­sity Med­i­cal Cen­ter neu­rol­o­gist. Woodrow Wil­son was so in­ca­pac­i­tated by a se­ries of strokes that his wife, Edith, be­came the vir­tual act­ing pres­i­dent. Franklin Roo­sevelt died of a mas­sive stroke on April 12, 1945, leav­ing the pres­i­dency to an un­pre­pared Harry Tru­man just as World War II was end­ing. And in 2000, for­mer Pres­i­dent Ger­ald Ford be­gan slur­ring his words dur­ing a TV in­ter­view. "Strokes af­fect the brain. And ev­ery­thing we do - from sim­ple mo­tor func­tions to more com­plex be­hav­iors such as plan­ning, rea­son­ing and judg­ment - is brain-re­lated," Biller said. "When a stroke af­fects a pres­i­dent, it can have a ma­jor im­pact not only on the in­di­vid­ual, but on the world." life­styles. Ch­ester Arthur was obese and got lit­tle ex­er­cise. Franklin Roo­sevelt was a heavy smoker. An­drew John­son may have abused al­co­hol. Wil­son and Dwight Eisen­hower suf­fered non­fa­tal strokes while in of­fice. (Un­like Wil­son, Ike did not suf­fer se­ri­ous dis­abil­i­ties). Seven pres­i­dents - John Tyler, Mil­lard Fill­more, John Quincy Adams, An­drew John­son, Ch­ester Arthur, Richard Nixon and Ger­ald Ford - suf­fered strokes af­ter leav­ing of­fice. What hap­pens if a pres­i­dent suf­fers a de­bil­i­tat­ing stroke while in of­fice? The 25th Amend­ment to the Con­sti­tu­tion pro­vides a mech­a­nism for the vice pres­i­dent to be­come act­ing pres­i­dent should the pres­i­dent be un­able to per­form his or her du­ties. Stroke treat­ments have sig­nif­i­cantly im­proved in re­cent years. And the sooner a pa­tient ar­rives at the hos­pi­tal, the bet­ter the out­come, Biller said. In re­view­ing the screen­ing fac­tors, the Miller School re­searchers found that 31 per­cent of all teens had one risk fac­tor for car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease – an ab­nor­mal ECG, an el­e­vated blood pres­sure or an el­e­vated body mass in­dex. In ad­di­tion, 15 per­cent had two risk fac­tors, and 4 per­cent had three risk fac­tors. “For teens with three risk fac­tors, the preva­lence of bor­der­line or ab­nor­mal ECGs con­sis­tent with pos­si­ble early heart dis­ease was very con­cern­ing at 26.9 per­cent,” said Lip­shultz. “This study sug­gests that there are a high num­ber of teens with car­dio­vas­cu­lar ab­nor­mal­i­ties who could ben­e­fit from coun­sel­ing and in­ter­ven­tions to re­duce the risk of fu­ture heart prob­lems.” Over­all, 50 per­cent of the screened stu­dents had one or more ab­nor­mal risk fac­tors for pre­ma­ture car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease. How­ever, when BMI and blood pres­sure re­sults were both nor­mal, there was a low chance that the heart was ad­versely af­fected with an ab­nor­mal ECG, ac­cord­ing to Lip­shultz.

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