Bill Clinton rests after stents placed in coronary artery
Former President Clinton, who underwent major surgery to clear blocked arteries six years ago, suffered chest pains Thursday and was taken to a New York hospital where doctors inserted stents in one of his coronary arteries, according to a close aide. An aide said Clinton was "in good spirits" after the procedure.
Los Angeles Times
NEW YORK — Former President Clinton, who underwent major surgery to clear blocked arteries six years ago, suffered chest pains Thursday and was taken to a New York hospital where doctors inserted stents in one of his coronary arteries, according to a close aide.
Clinton, 63, was "in good spirits" after the procedure, said Douglas Band, counselor to the former chief executive.
Clinton began experiencing "discomfort" in his chest and was taken to New York Presbyterian Hospital in Harlem, Band said in a statement. It was not clear where Clinton was when he was stricken, but the headquarters of his William J. Clinton Foundation are also in Harlem.
According to a White House official, President Obama "spoke to Clinton shortly before 7 p.m. (Eastern time) and wished him a speedy recovery. ... Clinton said he was feeling 'absolutely great.' "
The insertion of the stents, used to prop open arteries, was done after consultation with Clinton's cardiologist, the statement said.
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, who learned of her husband's hospitalization while in Washington, D.C., left for New York, according to The Associated Press. The couple's daughter, Chelsea, was reported to have arrived at the hospital. Aides to Mrs. Clinton said she planned to take a previously scheduled trip to the Persian Gulf starting Friday but may delay it, The Associated Press reported.
The insertion of stents is considered a relatively common procedure. It was a reminder of the health risks facing the former president, who doctors said in 2004 could have suffered a major heart attack had his heart problems not been diagnosed in time.
Then, as in the latest incident, Clinton sought medical help after experiencing chest pains.
The quadruple-bypass surgery, performed at the same hospital as Thursday's less invasive procedure, required doctors to surgically saw open Clinton's chest and reroute blood flow around his heart's blocked arteries. Doctors said his long-term recovery would depend on changing his diet to one with little salt and saturated fats.
Since leaving the White House, Clinton has taken on an exhausting work and travel schedule. Since the earthquake in Haiti on Jan. 12, which killed more than 200,000 people, Clinton has made two trips to that country in his role as U.N. special envoy.
Band said Clinton "will continue to focus on the work of his foundation and Haiti's relief and long-term recovery efforts."
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