Thursday, July 18, 2024

Parkinson’s Disease: Biden’s doctor explains White House neurologist visit

Mr Biden, 81, has increasingly faced questions about his mental fitness since his TV debate with Republican challenger Donald Trump.

• July 9, 2024
Joe Biden
Joe Biden [Credit: NBC News]

U.S. President Joe Biden’s personal physician on Tuesday stated that the president had not seen a neurologist outside of his annual physical examination.

This resulted from the U.S. media reports about a Parkinson’s specialist visiting the White House multiple times.

Mr Biden’s personal physician, Kevin O’Connor, said in a letter published on Monday that neurological specialist Cannard examined the president for each of his annual physicals.

“Biden has not seen a neurologist outside of his annual physical,” he said.

Mr O’Connor said Mr Cannard had been visiting patients at the White House for a dozen years and was not chosen because he was a movement disorder specialist.

The statement by Mr Biden’s personal physician came after a heated debate had broken out at a press conference between journalists and White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre.

The New York Times, citing official visitor logs, reported that Mr Cannard had visited the White House eight times since last summer.

Ms Jean-Pierre refused to answer questions about why Mr Cannard had visited the White House regularly over the past few months.

According to Mr O’Connor, the results of the neurological examination by Mr Cannard were made public each time, most recently at the end of February.

The published health report stated that there were no indications of possible strokes or Parkinson’s disease and that the president showed “no tremor, either at rest or with activity,” the letter said.

Mr Biden, 81, has increasingly faced questions about his mental fitness since his TV debate with Republican challenger Donald Trump.

A debate was sparked in the U.S. over whether Mr Biden is the right Democratic presidential candidate for the November election due to his age.

Mr Biden has rejected any doubts and refuses to take a cognitive health test to assess his mental abilities.

The White House’s recent action is uncommon and indicates the increasing pressure.

The release of the letter likely aims to dispel any rumours suggesting the possibility of Parkinson’s disease.

Mr Jean-Pierre told the press briefing that he was not being treated for the disease. 

(dpa/NAN)

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