Enrile may miss Friday’s hearing due to high BP
MANILA, Philippines–There’s a chance that Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile won’t be attending his court date on Friday if his blood pressure shoots up again to 200/90.
This was according to his doctors at Philippine National Police General Hospital, who noted that transferring the 90-year-old senator to the PNP Custodial Center in Camp Crame might endanger his life.
At a press briefing, Chief Supt. Alejandro Advincula, head of the PNP health service, said the PNP would allow the lawmaker to attend his arraignment if he was physically able.
“But if his blood pressure rises to 200/90 again, definitely he cannot go. We must consider the travel and the stress of facing the court,” the police official said.
An ambulance will transport Enrile to the Sandiganbayan, with a doctor and nurse on standby for any emergency.
Enrile will be given the go-signal “once his vital signs are stable, particularly his blood pressure.”
The senator has been suffering from uncontrolled hypertension, which even caused his 2D echo to be postponed for two days, according to Advincula.
PNP doctors are administering medicine to bring down Enrile’s blood pressure to avoid fatal complications such as a stroke.
Advincula said transferring Enrile to the Custodial Center might endanger his life.
“He has uncontrolled hypertension. So if he is transferred to a venue that is not good for his age, I think his hypertension might be triggered again. That is why he was brought to the hospital, to prevent such complications,” he said.
On Thursday, a seven-man team from the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) went to the PNP hospital to examine Enrile if he should be placed under hospital arrest.
Advincula said the PGH team reviewed the senator’s medical charts and results of his complete blood count, blood chemistry, electrocardiogram, chest X-ray and 2D echo.
Enrile was also examined by the PGH team, which recommended the installation of a machine to monitor irregular heartbeats for 24 hours.
Advincula said the PNP was very concerned about Enrile’s hypertension, which remains uncontrolled even with medication.
He cited stress as one of the factors triggering the hypertension.
The PNP had to limit Enrile’s visitors to two at a time after his blood pressure went up after receiving many friends.
“One time, his blood pressure went up to 200/90 as a result of his many visitors. It was decided to limit the number of visitors. Of course, we ask him if he can still receive visitors,” Advincula said.
Enrile’s personal nurse monitors his blood pressure hourly while PNP doctors check it every shift.
Dr. Stanley Sevillano, Enrile’s attending doctor, noted that the senator was suffering from episodes of weakness due to his chronic hypertension.
Aside from hypertension, the PNP doctors are monitoring the senator’s diabetes, coronary artery disease and high cholesterol levels.
Despite his chronic hypertension, Enrile is able to sleep well, eat his hospital rations and do passive exercises in the morning.
“I haven’t seen any signs of depression. I don’t know how he handles the situation. When I see him, he looks OK,” Advincula said.
Sevillano added: “He seems high-spirited.”
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