Concerns Over President's Health, Many Say Trump's Weight is Fake News

Mae Love
January 21, 2018

Dr. Ronny Jackson - who also worked with the previous administration, and was praised in social media by former Barack Obama staff - said he never doubted this president's cognitive ability.

Jackson declined during his question and answer session to compare Trump's health to that of other presidents, and he described Trump as in good health outside of needing to lose weight and to exercise.

But on the positive side, Jackson also said Trump had no history of smoking or drinking and did not have diabetes.

"That tells you there's some calcium", he said.

Trump's mental fitness for the job had come under intense scrutiny after a recently published, controversial book, "Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House", portrayed him as childlike and mercurial.

Not expected are any conclusions about Trump's mental acuity.

Jackson said that upon request from Trump, he administered the Montreal Cognitive Assessment test, which the president scored a 30 out of 30 on, indicating he has no serious mental impairments. It's not a measure of intelligence but rather tests cognitive decline, looking for signs of Alzheimer's and dementia. The test does not assess psychiatric fitness.

Jackson said Trump urged the doctor to "answer every question" the media had before he stepped up to the podium, and he did so with gusto during an nearly hour-long briefing with the media, in a remarkable show of transparency.

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Contrast that to President Trump jumping across a highway partition to walk to a speech in March 2016. The doctor will say some numbers and the patient is supposed to repeat them in the order that they hear them. However, he did say that, in theory, a ideal score on the Montreal test does not necessarily rule out cognitive decline.

The White House physician said several times that there was nothing he was holding back, and that neither Trump nor his aides had coached him on what to say.

Trump, 71, is 6-foot-3 and his weight is 239 pounds, which is considered overweight by the medical community and just short of obese, Jackson said.

His blood pressure was 122 over 74, his resting heart rate was 68 beats per minute, and a stress test resulted in "above average exercise capacity".

Jackson credited the results to genetics. "Technically, he has nonclinical coronary atherosclerosis", Jackson told reporters.

Trump already takes 10 milligrams daily of Crestor, a cholesterol-lowering medication, which Jackson said he plans to increase. Calling Trump a "sociopath" (a diagnosis that is no longer used, by the way) and a "narcissist" are among the most common ill-informed jabs. How you could take these indices and say excellent health? Called the Montreal Cognitive Assessment, it is created to detect early signs of memory loss and other neurologic functions - and Trump had a flawless score, the doctor said.

"This was a bit of a snapshot in time", she said.

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