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America's 10 Unhealthiest Presidents

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7. Woodrow Wilson

28th President (1913-1921)

Hypertension, headaches, double-vision: Wilson suffered from multiple strokes throughout adulthood. Symptoms foreshadowing these episodes were hypertension, massive headaches, and double-vision.

Multiple strokes: The first of a series of strokes occurred in 1896, which hindered the fingers in his right hand and left him unable to write normally for a year.

Blindness: His third stroke, in 1906, left him blind in his left eye.

Paralysis: Finally, in 1919, the president suffered a massive stroke that paralyzed his left side and forced him into a wheelchair. Wilson decided to keep his condition a secret from the public, which essentially meant isolating himself. It's thought that during his final three years in the White House, his wife Edith made all presidential decisions for him.

Eventually, the truth of Wilson's illness became public, spurring the ratification of the 25th Amendment, which states that the vice president shall become the executive power in the event of the president's death, resignation, or disability.

Next:  6. Andrew Jackson


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drthan wrote:

Ummm...Where's FDR on this list? polio with paralysis, severe heart disease with CHF due to chronic hypertension, probable metastatic melanoma, severe atherosclerosis. Died shortly into 4th term. A glaring omission maybe due to the fact that his medical records were lost/destroyed.

10/3/2011 11:16:51 PM Report Abuse

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