doctors · health care · Information · Politics

Hillary’s Parkinson’s Disease? Two Key People have Not Denied It

I’m going to keep this very brief for now and hopefully can get to more on this later. But there are some big questions being brought up about Hillary Clinton suffering from Parkinson’s Disease. These were apparently brought up last week in a video that quickly mad rounds.

imageYesterday, Hillary Clinton left a 9/11 event early. Several videos caught her appearing to “pass out.” I will note we cannot determine whether she lost consciousness, but merely that she lost her balance.

In the aftermath, Hillary’s physician, Lisa Bardack, MD, released a statement that Hillary had suffered from a cough “related to allergies.” A follow up led to a diagnosis of pneumonia. Hillary then got overheated and dehydrated.

This was Dr. Bardack’s statement. What was curious was that the statement made no reference to the key allegation: Parkinson’s. In fact, the leading killer of Parkinson’s patients is pneumonia, which happens because of swallowing difficulties causing food and fluids to build up in the lungs.

There is a problem now. A big conflict. On one side are those who insist that Hillary Clinton has Parkinson’s. On the other side are those who deny that Hillary has Parkinson’s.

The events of yesterday provided an opportunity to dispel the talk of Parkinson’s. Clinton did not dispel the rumors.

Dr Bardack? Hillary Clinton is her patient. Hillary Clinton as protected by HIPAA and medical privacy just like anyone else and can only disclose what her patient allows her to disclose.

Dr Bardack also has a duty to be truthful in her representations. Thus she can say that Hillary’s cough is “related” to allergies. But I’m sure Dr Bardack knows that “related to allergies” and “caused by allergies” are different things. The language suggests that Dr Bardack was truthful, but could not tell the whole truth.

The most curious thing to me is that the statement did not contain any reference to Parkinson’s. None. Dr Bardack’s statement could have said, “This is not related to Parkinson’s disease. Hillary Clinton has not been diagnosed with Parkinson’s and have never been treated for Parkinson’s disease” then the conflict would be largely resolved.

Dr. Bardack did not and has not denied that Hillary Clinton has or is being treated for Parkinson’s Disease. Hillary Clinton herself has not denied that she has or is being treated of Parkinson’s disease. 

A simple statement – one that gives an unqualified denial – would do much to resolve this debate.

Neither Dr Barnack nor Hillary Clinton deny Parkinson’s. Neither have public ally confirmed it.

The only solution to this is for Hillary to either give an unqualified confirmation or an unqualified denial. Or for Dr Barnack to do so.

As it is, the handling of the episode – the failure to address is head on, has added fuel to the fire

 

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2 thoughts on “Hillary’s Parkinson’s Disease? Two Key People have Not Denied It

  1. Cause of death among patients with Parkinson’s disease: a rare mortality due to cerebral haemorrhage.

    Iwasaki S1, Narabayashi Y, Hamaguchi K, Iwasaki A, Takakusagi M.

    Author information

    Abstract

    Causes of death, with special reference to cerebral haemorrhage, among 240 patients with pathologically verified Parkinson’s disease were investigated using the Annuals of the Pathological Autopsy Cases in Japan from 1981 to 1985. The leading causes of death were pneumonia and bronchitis (44.1%), malignant neoplasms (11.6%), heart diseases (4.1%), cerebral infarction (3.7%) and septicaemia (3.3%). Cerebral haemorrhage was the 11th most frequent cause of death, accounting for only 0.8% of deaths among the patients, whereas it was the 5th most common cause of death among the Japanese general population in 1985. The low incidence of cerebral haemorrhage as a cause of death in patients with Parkinson’s disease may reflect the hypotensive effect of levodopa and a hypotensive mechanism due to reduced noradrenaline levels in the parkinsonian brain.

    If what we are seeing is true, this woman is at the end stages of a serious illness that would preclude her from the presidency.

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  2. Every doctor is restrained by the scope of practice defined in their licenses. They aren’t supposed to make any public statements about diagnoses that haven’t been pre-authorized by the patient. HIPAA regulations are very strict about this. It’s why Medical Records clerks get fired not only for leaking info about celebrities, but even for taking unauthorized looks at their records.

    Medical information is protected private data. Any release of information must be voluntary. This is one area of information in which (legally) the public has no “right to know”. Our political traditions and cultural demand to always know everything also exist, but run counter to the privacy laws. Candidates usually choose to release as little as they feel they can get by with, to satisfy public demands for “transparency”. But very few outside the care teams knew at the time that FDR had no voluntary leg control, that Wilson had a stroke in office and could not speak for months, that JFK took massive quantities of painkillers, or that Dick Cheney had his fourth heart attack during the 2000 Florida recount. It comes out later, usually after they die.

    (I was a Medical Imaging tech. I saw at least a dozen people get fired, some on the spot, for breaking patient confidentiality. You aren’t even supposed to share information about patients with your spouse.)

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