Concerns over the health and medications of Democrat Joe Biden were a trending topic of discussion on social media this week as aides announced new aliments, and focus grew around Biden’s use of blood thinners.
The White House announced on Thursday morning that Democrat President Joe Biden tested positive for COVID-19, and it also emerged, with the announcement, that Biden had stopped taking his heart medication to take the prescribed anti-viral drug, leading many to be concerned for the 79-year-old.
The White House press secretary said he was experiencing ‘very mild’ symptoms and would work from the residence until he tests negative for COVID.
‘Folks, I’m doing great,’ Biden posted. ‘Thanks for your concern”.
While Biden doesn’t look or sound that sick, concerns are that the 79 old is being forced to stop taking his blood-thinning heart medication while he’s on the anti-viral drug Paxlovid.
Folks, I'm doing great. Thanks for your concern. Just called Senator Casey, Congressman Cartwright, and Mayor Cognetti (and my Scranton cousins!) to send my regrets for missing our event today.
Keeping busy! pic.twitter.com/uf7AsOg571
— President Biden (@POTUS) July 21, 2022
Biden also posted a video statement thanking well-wishers and saying he was hard at work. ‘It’s going to be OK.’
An update from me: pic.twitter.com/L2oCR0uUTu
— President Biden (@POTUS) July 21, 2022
“Biden had two doses of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine shortly before taking office. He received a first booster shot in September and a second on March 30.
Stringent White House precautions meant he had avoided the virus, even as it laid low close aides and advisers.
‘This morning, President Biden tested positive for COVID-19. He is fully vaccinated and twice boosted and experiencing very mild symptoms,’ said Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre.
‘He has begun taking Paxlovid. Consistent with CDC guidelines, he will isolate at the White House and will continue to carry out all of his duties fully during that time.’
Biden’s advanced age, his history with non-melanoma skin cancers, and the fact he takes drugs for high cholesterol and blood clots will all raise concerns that he could be at risk of developing severe illness,” The Daily Mail reported.
Officials and aides delivered a message that there was little cause for concern despite his advanced age, but of course that is the topic on the minds of many Americans.
First lady Jill Biden, who tested negative, said: ‘He’s doing fine, he’s feeling good.’Dr. Kevin O’Connor, the president’s physician, said Biden had a runny nose and dry cough. O’Connor said he expected the president to respond well to the anti-viral drug Paxlovid.
Biden, who has a history of heart arrhythmias and brain aneurysms, appears to some to be in a dangerous position as Paxlovid has been reported to have significant interactions with some heart meds and blood thinners. In addition, rebound symptoms also occurred with Paxlovid.
According to WebMD: ” Blood thinners, most commonly Coumadin (warfarin), are given to prevent blood clots that can form in the heart and be swept up into the circulatory system, and thus be carried to the brain and cause a stroke.”
According to Yale Medicine:
“The list of drugs that Paxlovid interacts with includes some organ anti-rejection drugs that transplant patients take, as well as more common drugs like some used to treat heart arrhythmias. Paxlovid also decreases the metabolism of anticoagulants, or blood thinners, that many older adults depend on, driving up levels of those medications in the body to a point where they are unsafe.”
And then there are concerns with Biden’s use of thinners, at his age, in the first place because some reports show use over 75 leads to a higher risk of patient’s stroke as well as risk for bleeding and fall:
“Taking direct anticoagulants increases the risk of stomach and brain bleeds in older adults, events that can be particularly harmful after a fall,” according to lowininstutite.com.
According to the AARP, what people can expect with aging over 70:
People over 75 have an immune system that isn’t as sensitive, which means people are more susceptible to getting sick. In addition, chronic inflammation, linked to heart disease, diabetes and arthritis, makes it even harder for the body to mount an effective immune response, and response to vaccines decreases with age, leaving people even more vulnerable to illnesses like flu and pneumonia.
Rates of cancer rise with age but then level off around 85.
The heart’s walls are getting thicker and its valves are stiffer. As a result, heart disease incidence rises; it’s the leading cause of death for people 75 through 84.
Additionally, adding to other concerns about Biden’s health, he made a statement this week that he had Cancer:
Double boosted Biden announced he has Covid one day after announcing he has cancer pic.twitter.com/H9uCuJCfDM
— Max Blumenthal (@MaxBlumenthal) July 21, 2022
Biden’s doctor was not in attendance at Jean-Pierre’s briefing. Instead, White House COVID-19 response coordinator Dr. Ashish Jha fielded questions about the president’s health, despite not having treated Biden.
That drew accusations that the White House was less than transparent about Biden’s many health issues.
‘Could we get the president’s physician here,’ asked White House Correspondents Association President Tamara Keith, ‘so that we can not play the game of telephone?’
Jha also confirmed that Biden had stopped taking two heart medicines – a blood thinner to protect against clots and a medication to lower cholesterol.
‘It’s a very standard common thing that we do when we give people Paxlovid,’ he said.
‘And you don’t need to do anything in those circumstances. They both get stopped for the five days that he’s on Paxlovid and then they get restarted and it’s totally fine and pretty normal practise.’
But it felt to many Americans that downplaying the use of blood thinners and then on again- off again use them for an aging Biden- should be considered with a lot more concern than what the White House was showing.