October 20th, 2008
12:30 PM ET
4 years ago

Biden to release medical records

The Obama-Biden campaign will release Joe Biden's medical history.
The Obama-Biden campaign will release Joe Biden's medical history.

SEATTLE (CNN) – The Obama-Biden campaign will release Joe Biden’s medical records to the press Monday for review as well as hold a conference call with a doctor briefed on Biden’s medical history.

Reporters will have around five hours to sift through the records, which will include medical documents from 1988 when Biden suffered two brain aneurysms and a blood clot in his lung.

Biden collapsed in his Rochester, New York hotel room on February 9, writing in his autobiography ‘Promises to Keep’ that it felt like “lightning flashing inside my head, a powerful electric surge – and then a rip of pain like I’d never felt before.”

The Delaware senator – who had just ended his 1988 presidential bid – flew home to Wilmington, where he was rushed to the hospital by his wife Jill, where doctors discovered an aneurysm. A practicing Catholic, Biden was given his last rites, but surgery at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center saved his life.

After the discovery of a blot clot in his lung and another surgery for a second aneurysm, Biden recovered and returned to the Senate seven months later.

The New York Times was given an advance look at Biden’s records Monday, and is reporting that they don’t indicate any current medical problems. A letter from the senator’s doctor – Dr. Eisold, the Capitol physician - said that Biden has “recovered fully without continued effects” from the aneurysm.


The article says that approximately 5 percent or less of those who have had “berry aneurysms” get them again. The big question the report raised: when was the last time Biden had a bran scan?

Eisold will not speak to the press, but has briefed Dr. Matthew Parker, who will be on the conference call. The Times article reports that Parker says Eisold told him “it’s a non-issue” and “was very definitive about” not doing brain scan tests now.

Sarah Palin will now be the lone candidate to have not released any information from her medical records, though Barack Obama only released a one-page letter from his doctor attesting to his “excellent health.” John McCain, who had skin cancer, allowed reporters to view extensive medical records in May.


Filed under: Joe Biden
soundoff (219 Responses)
  1. Charlie Bradley

    For the Anonymous who said he or she wouldn't vote for another Democrat after Clinton:

    Why Not? the records show that under his administration the country thrived in terms of the budget–there was surplus and in eight years Bush has us in so much debt that it will take years to pay off

    I suspect you are going by Clinton's "extra-curricular activities" Well Newsflash!!!!!! Every President going back to Thomas JEFFERSON has had affairs with other women while they were in office, and it has never been proven to be true or untrue as to whether or not Lincoln was at the very least, bisexual :) Anyone who uses THAT as an excuse not to vote for the best man for the job Is materialistic and shallow, and doesn't deserve to cast a ballot AT ALL.

    October 20, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  2. Former Republican in Texas

    This article is a little misleading.... it infers that Biden collapsed in his hotel room in February.... what it fails to say in that same line is that is was 20 years ago.
    Even though it says 1988 farther down in the story, there are a LOT of people out there who won't ever read that far.

    October 20, 2008 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  3. Charlie Bradley

    Those of you calling for Palin's medical records...YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Lets see how many dents are in her skull from being hit by hockey pucks!!!! thats the only reason I can think of why this crazy banshee acts like the crazy banshee she is!!

    October 20, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  4. Countdown with Keith Olbermann

    I know this isn't the right comment page but I just wanted to get something off of my chest: Rush Limbaugh is a degenerate, deplorable, derelict, racist, ignorant, lying, fat, worthless piece of crap. Thank you for your time and thanks for posting this CNN.

    October 20, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  5. Joe "Obama's Not Ready" Biden

    Perhaps these will explain his gaffes.

    October 20, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  6. jaye

    I love Joe Biden.
    BTW – WHERE are McCain's medical records...the complete set?
    Is he hiding something?

    John McCain is acting pretty smug today... he and his campaign have a nasty trick up their sleeve and it's about to be revealed.
    Prepare yourselves.

    October 20, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  7. Jack

    VOTE SMART: McCain/Palin – we can TRUST them

    October 20, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  8. jm for sc

    Great to know that Joe is in good health.

    What about Palin's record? I would like to know if she really had that baby and was able to go back to work in five days. They should also consider the release of their medical records. Then it would be no question in the minds of anyone regarding the sanity of McCain and Palin both.

    Obama/Biden 08

    October 20, 2008 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  9. jimmy

    As I had just posted a comment about Joe Biden's age and medical history which CNN erased.: I cited Joe Bidens age of 66 and in foru years he will be 70 . if he serves 8 years he will be 74 years old
    if he should run vfor president. With a history of Brain aneurysms and blood clot in his lung. it appears unlikely, he will run for Ptresident at age 74. Obama is very young and athletic and healthy. He is however susceptible to high blood pressure and other diseases.

    October 20, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  10. Rebekah A.

    I love Biden! Obama made a great choice!

    October 20, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  11. Can Palin define "Socialism"?

    Socialism claims are reckless and fear-mongering. For Martinez and Palin to spread fear in Florida is domestic terrorism and unpatriotic. Taxes are used to invest in public works and in the public interest to grow the economic production possibility frontier. "Invisible hand" supply-side economics of Regan/Bush/GW have exploded the deficit and "redistributed wealth" by percentage to the richest, while shrinking the pie. Democrats are about growing the pie and giving everyone access to participate in that growth.

    October 20, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  12. Countdown with Keith Olbermann

    In 100 years the children of this great nation will look back in their history books and read that 2008 was the death of the republican party and John McCain & Sarah Palin were it's destroyers.

    October 20, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  13. Concerned INDEPENDENT CT voter

    Are you inferring that General Colin Powell LIED about why he chose to support Barack Obama's candidacy?

    He was very clear in his support of Joe Biden, Barack's intelligence, thoughtfulness, judgement and more. He explained why he waited so long to endorse a candidate. It was clear in his delivery that this was a difficult and serious decision for him. To suggest otherwise is incredulous.

    Once again, Rush Limbaugh, you sicken me.

    -V

    October 20, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  14. Sean from Orlando

    It's funny that they waited this long to release old man Biden's records, perhaps it is because the Biden's past health problems make skin cancer look like a scraped knee and Obama supporters are being hypocrites by saying anything about McCain's skin cancer when Obama is a smoker and Biden has suffered two brain aneurysms and a blood clot in his lung. Biden is not the sort of VP we need, he is as old as McCain is, he has poor judgment, he has let all the voters money be stolen from past campaigns due to his lack of attentiveness to his own campaign, and he himself truly feels that Obama is not ready for the job, he said so and only changed his tune when he stood to gain the VP slot.

    October 20, 2008 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  15. Phil in KC

    Biden's health is an issue and McCain's is not? Are they responding to criticism or are they getting in front of the issue?
    Anyone who can put up with the rigors of a political campaign has my admiration.

    October 20, 2008 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  16. demwit

    Wheres the botox records for his forehead? Look! Not a wringle!!??

    October 20, 2008 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  17. LMC

    Good news. Now how about Obama do the same and release his full medical records?

    October 20, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  18. demwit

    Do aneurysms kill all the nerves in your forehead??

    October 20, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  19. anthony

    I wonder what effect the POW term of Senator McCain has on his ability to rationally respond to the pressure of the highest political office in the nation.

    October 20, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
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