Duterte bares checkup with doctor on heart pain
MANILA — President Duterte disclosed that a doctor visited him in Malacañang on Monday to check on his condition after he felt pain in his heart.
Speaking before big taxpayers at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC), the President also took lightly the claim of former Sen. Francisco Tatad that he had visited a hospital in China during the holiday break to seek treatment for his cancer.
“It’s true. I went to China. It’s true that I went to a hospital. I had myself circumcised again,” said Mr. Duterte, sending his audience, which included business tycoons Manuel V. Pangilinan and Lance Gokongwei, rolling in laughter.
Addressing himself to Tatad, he said: “You son of a bitch. You were with (the late dictator Ferdinand) Marcos for a long time.”
Mr. Duterte, who had once lambasted a journalist for asking about his health during the campaign period, said a certain “Dra. Del Rosario” from Cardinal Santos Medical Center in San Juan City went to see him.
He said he came late to his activities in Malacañang and at the PICC because he had to undergo “EKG,” also called ECG or electrocardiogram, a medical diagnostic test on the heart.
“I was late. Pardon me. I had an EKG. I was not feeling well. I told (the doctor), ‘I feel pain in my heart,’” the Chief Executive said.
“When Dra. Del Rosario from Cardinal Santos arrived, she brought with her the EKG (machine). She said, ‘There’s nothing wrong with your heart,’” he recalled her telling him.
“It might just be EJK. Your ailment is extrajudicial (killings),” the President quoted the doctor as telling him in jest.
Mr. Duterte, 72, previously admitted that he was taking cancer pills to relieve the unbearable pain in his spine despite a warning from his doctor that he could lose his cognitive ability and that he was already “abusing the drug.”
He also said he has been diagnosed with Barrett’s esophagus, a serious complication of the gastroesophageal reflux disease involving changes in the tissue lining the esophagus.
The President likewise said he has been suffering from Buerger’s disease, the constriction of blood vessels caused by the accumulation of nicotine. SFM