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Hillary Clinton 'recovering well' from pneumonia and 'fit to serve as president'

Published 14/09/2016

Hillary Clinton will return to the presidential campaign trail after recovering from pneumonia (AP)
Hillary Clinton will return to the presidential campaign trail after recovering from pneumonia (AP)
Former President Bill Clinton pauses for a selfie with a supporter at a coffee shop while campaigning for his wife, Hillary, in Los Angeles (AP)

Hillary Clinton is "recovering well" from pneumonia and remains "fit to serve as president of the United States", her doctor said in a letter released on Wednesday by her campaign.

The health details made public by the Democratic presidential nominee included a description of the pneumonia diagnosis Mrs Clinton received last week Friday.

Her illness became public after she left Sunday's 9/11 memorial service early and was seen on video staggering while getting into a van.

The health episode fuelled long-simmering conservative conspiracy theories about Mrs Clinton's health and provided a fresh line of attack for rival Donald Trump, who has frequently questioned whether Mrs Clinton has the stamina to serve as commander in chief.

Facing criticism about a lack of transparency when it comes to her health, Mrs Clinton's campaign promised to disclose more detailed information about her health this week.

The letter released on Wednesday by the campaign stated that Mrs Clinton underwent a chest scan that revealed she had "mild, non-contagious bacterial pneumonia", according to Mrs Clinton's doctor, Dr Lisa Bardack, chair of internal medicine at CareMount Medical in Mount Kisco, New York. She was treated with a 10-day course of Levaquin, an antibiotic used to treat infections.

Dr Bardack said Mrs Clinton is up to date on all vaccines, including two given to help prevent pneumonia - Prevnar and Pneumovax. The letter did not state when she received those vaccines.

"She is recovering well with antibiotics and rest," wrote Dr Bardack, who also authored a letter about Mrs Clinton's health released in July 2015. "She continues to remain healthy and fit to serve as president of the United States."

Mrs Clinton, 68, has blood pressure of 100 over 70. Her total cholesterol was 189; her LDL or "bad" cholesterol was 103, and her HDL or "good" cholesterol was 56 - all within healthy levels and not signalling the need for any medications. She has also had a normal mammogram and breast ultrasound, according to the letter.

She takes thyroid and allergy medicines and the blood thinner Coumadin, prescribed as a preventative after she suffered a blood clot resulting from a 2012 concussion.

The blood clot, which was in a vein in the space between the brain and the skull behind the right ear, led Mrs Clinton to spend a few days in New York-Presbyterian Hospital and take a month-long absence from the State Department for treatment.

Mrs Clinton has spent the past three days out of the public eye, recuperating at her suburban New York home. She will return to the campaign trail on Thursday, with a rally in North Carolina and a speech before a Hispanic group in Washington.

"I just talked to her - she's feeling great and I think she'll be back out there tomorrow," former President Bill Clinton said Wednesday, when he stepped in for his wife at a previous scheduled campaign event in Las Vegas.

"It's a crazy time we live in, you know, when people think there's something unusual about getting the flu."

Mr Trump, too, has said he plans to release the details of a recent physical this week. On Wednesday, he handed over a one-page summary of that exam, conducted by his long-time physician, Dr Harold Bornstein, to Dr Mehmet Oz while taping an episode of Oz's show.

Ever the showman, Mr Trump's appearance on The Dr Oz Show was billed by the campaign as a discussion about his general well-being and his family's medical history.

The show does not air until Thursday and the campaign declined to immediately disclose the results. But a release from the show said "Dr Oz took Mr Trump though a full review of his systems", including his nervous system, cardiovascular health, prostate health and family medical history.

Dr Bornstein had previously written a note declaring the 70-year-old Mr Trump, if elected, would be the healthiest president in history. He later said he had written the letter in five minutes as a limousine sent by the candidate idled outside.

AP

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