Biden ‘Not a Healthy Guy,’ Says Former Obama Doctor

December 20, 2019 Updated: December 20, 2019
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One of Former President Barack Obama’s doctors has said Democratic presidential candidate and former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden “is not a healthy guy” after the 77-year-old’s doctor released a report this week deeming him “healthy” and “vigorous.”

After examining Biden’s medical history, Dr. David Scheiner, who served as Obama’s doctor, came to the conclusion that Biden is “not a healthy guy,” the Washington Examiner reported.

“He’s not in bad shape for his age, but I wouldn’t say he’s in outstanding health. Could I guarantee he won’t have issues for the next four years? He has a lot of issues that are just sort of sitting there.”

Scheiner’s comments came after Biden’s physician in a three-page report released on Tuesday deemed him fit and healthy to be president.

“Vice President Biden is a healthy, vigorous 77-year-old male, who is fit to successfully execute the duties of the presidency, to include those as chief executive, head of state, and commander in chief,” Dr. Kevin O’Connor concluded in the report (pdf) requested by Biden.

O’Connor has been Biden’s primary care physician since being assigned the role of Physician to the Vice President in 2009.

The report says that while Biden exercises and keeps his cholesterol at healthy levels with the use of statin medication, he has experienced episodes of atrial fibrillation noticed in 2003. Atrial fibrillation is a type of abnormal heart rhythm that’s potentially serious but treatable. Biden has never needed any treatment for this, and he currently has “no signs of heart failure,” the report says.

The report also acknowledged that in 1988, Biden, then aged 44, suffered from intracranial hemorrhage from a cerebral aneurysm, for which he underwent surgery. Later, Biden’s medical team found a second aneurysm, which was treated and had not bled.

O’Connor’s report added that Biden is taking medications for seasonal allergies and occasional reflux. Biden has had several small, non-melanoma skin cancers removed over the years.

The former vice president has also been treated for Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) and had a gallbladder removal in 2003, and surgery on his sinus and nasal passages.

The report adds, “[Biden] has no history of diabetes, thyroid disease, hypertension, tobacco use, angina, myocardial infarction, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), ulcer disease, inflammatory bowel disease, any neurologic disorder, or cancer of any kind other than localized non-melanoma skin cancers.”

Preventive screenings, including colonoscopies, show no other significant health concerns to-date.

However, 81-year-old Scheiner said he is concerned about the likelihood Biden could suffer a stroke, adding that he wants to review MRI or CT scan results. He elaborated that he would also like to see the results of a sleep study, given Biden’s sleep apnea history and previous sinus and nasal passage surgery.

Biden’s most recent health report also fails to disclose details of checkups that were likely carried out to foresee future health issues. It also doesn’t disclose details of a surgery Biden had for an enlarged prostate, or mention his vision issues, Scheiner said.

“I had no idea Biden had such a history. My goodness gracious, he’s got a lot of history,” Scheiner said.

Biden has been copping the media spotlight for his various apparent memory lapses. He has regularly gotten dates, people, and places mixed up. They’re usually referred to as “gaffes” or “verbal stumbles,” but others argue the mixups are a possible sign of cognitive issues.

The Associated Press reports that Biden has longevity in his family, his father lived to age 86, and his mother to the age of 92.

If Biden happens to win the 2020 presidential election, he would hold the record for being the oldest person to be inaugurated. The same applies to Sanders and Bloomberg.

Mimi Nguyen Ly and the Associated Press contributed to this report.