I'm mad that Tim Russert is dead. He shouldn't be. And it pisses me off. Some nutritionist went on a rant about how his face clearly showed signs of impaired kidney function and he needed to eliminate meat from his diet. His point was that pharmaceuticals lull us into a false sense of safety. And that might have contributed to his death too.
Everybody has a take on it.
Apparently a defibrillator might have helped Tim Russert while they were waiting for the paramedics. Shock the heart into a better rhythm. Any rhythm. Except when you've got a clot and the blood can't get through the vessel that's blocked, how does that work? I guess it keeps things going well enough in the short term.
Dr. Oz was on the Today Program
talking about the portable defibrillator. How it can save lives. But only if you can find it. Even though most businesses
have one these days, nobody seems to know where it's located. Dr. Oz
demonstrated as much this morning by asking lots of people where it was at NBC and practically nobody knew.
Personally, I think Tim Russert just needed a different doctor. Not someone who could get him to stop drinking or change his diet, because I don't think anyone could have done that. But a doctor who could have ordered some more conclusive tests on his heart instead of relying on a stress test. A stress test? That's it? The guy's 58, working in one of the most high stress businesses in the world, and the doc orders a stress test?
In my humble [okay not humble], layperson's opinion, the stress test is probably the most useless diagnostic tool there is for determining a bad heart. Give me a nickel for everyone who has passed a stress test and had a heart attack soon after, and I would be eating caviar out of a Waterford bowl in my Aspen hideaway.
Stress tests are so low tech, you can take one at your health club. They're also easy to misread. Doctors have many more accurate options for finding out how your ticker is ticking.
I bet a million dollars Russert wasn't on aspirin either. Since he had already been diagnosed with heart disease, I'm surprised he wasn't on it every day. In fact, if he had recognized his symptoms ahead of time he could have taken an aspirin before he passed out. It might have broken up the clot.
About that clot. I still think long hours on a plane didn't help. Now that I have discovered he was diabetic, I'm sure it didn't help.
I also don't think he was asymptomatic. He just gutted it out. Denied any symptoms at his physical. No doc, I'm fine, really.
A guy Russert had just interviewed about an upcoming book said to his co-author that he didn't think Tim was feeling well when they were leaving the recording studio. Shortly before Russert died.
He probably wasn't feeling well at all, but since he didn't have sharp, staggering pain, only a nagging something, he just kept pushing through.
I think you tend to ignore vague symptoms. when you're in a job that makes enormous physical, mental and emotional demands on you. There's no time to stop. So he was probably thinking he'd take care of whatever it was later. He was also thinking that maybe later, the problem might even be gone. No doubt, the same thing had probably happened before and whatever it was had passed.
I'm one of those people who has to dissect everything when something goes wrong. Especially when it shouldn't go wrong.
I'll get over it.
His son, Luke, talked about his father on TV today. What an articulate, smart young man. Clearly a good father has passed his legacy down to a remarkable son.