Saturday, December 16, 2006

Senator Tim Johnson

First of all ,I would like to join the thousands of well wishers who pray for Sen. Tim Johnsons full recovery.
I have known him for many years as a gentle sincere and compassionate public servant ,well liked by members of both parties.We have had him here in Rockland County for a pro-Israel rally sponsored by Huvpac.

Based upon my own medical experience,and my in-house neurosurgical consultant,who spent shabbat with our family(my son-in-law,Dr Paul Ratzker)there are some serious potential problems that have not fully been addressed.
The fact that the operating neurosurgeon,has not appeard before the press is unusual.While it could be due to the fact that the family so requested,it might be because Senators Reid and Daschle who have spent time in the hospital,do not want to upset the troops with status reports that would be upsetting.
We do not know a great deal!
How long after admission was he taken to surgery-and what were his symptoms? What did the angiogram or MRI etc show?How long was the surgery? How much brain tissue was compressed by the bleeding? Why were they unable to clip the "feeding arteries"?Was it because that they had so much bleeding and tissue damage that the whole operation was centered on stopping the hemmorhage? (the failure to clip the vessels,makes further bleeds more likely)
How much brain edema (swelling ) does he have ,and has it increased ,decreased or remained the same since surgery?What modalities have been used to measure the edema.?Is he on any medication like steroids for this condition?
Is he on a respirator, and what is his respiratory status?
What are his vital signs(including temp), and does he require medication for low or high blood pressure?
Where exactly in the brain was the pathology? What about his general medical condition(heart,kidneys etc)?
The fact that it is reported that he is responding to voice and touch is a wonderful note of progress.Are these positive findings improving or static?
However,my impression is that when VIP's undergo surgery,the public is often not really given the true facts.This particular case is different because of the potential fallout for control of the Senate.
Sen Reid is not a physician,nor is the Capital physician an expert in this condition.
It is time for the attending surgeon to brief the press on a regular basis.