Joseph Biden: Physical Examination 2019

Comment: This is the best of the medical notes released for the presidential candidates of 2020. However, it neverthess falls short in full transparency, as indicated below. Source: 1

Page 1:

  • The description of the echocardiogram is obviously incomplete, most notably missing (a) the size of the left atrium, and (b) the state of the mitral valve. Both of these are essential parameters in the management of atrial fibrillation. It would also be of interest to know the thickness of his left ventricular wall, because it seems hard to believe that a 77-year old man would have no history of hypertension after having been on the rubber-chicken circuit since age 29.
  • What condition prompted removal of the gall bladder?
  • How long has he been taking cholesterol lower medication? Can it really be true that the Vice President did not undergo stress testing or a coronary CT scan?
  • The date of Biden's upper endoscopy is omitted, as are the actual results of the test. Read carefully, the note says only why the test was performed.
  • The dates and nature of his sinonasal operations are omitted.

Page 2:
  • The references to tobacco and alcohol use the present tense, hence give no information about risk incurred in the past.
  • There is no mention of neuropsychological complications, whether present or not, from his two brain operations.
  • His gall bladder disorder is not specified.

Page 3:
  • [Not clear how "regular pulse rate" fits with "irregularly irregular"]
  • [Nice to see B12 in there!]
  • "No acute ST or T wave changes" only says the EKG is unchanged from a previous one. It does not rule out ischemic signs on the EKG.
Cited Sources
  1. O'Connor, Kevin C. [Report of Joseph Biden's medical history and physical examination]. (Published 15 Dec. 2019. Downloaded on 2021-01-18.) Available on the web:

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