Vice President Dick Cheney: Outpatient Procedure to Correct Abnormal Heart Rhythm (Atrial Fibrillation)

Vice President Dick Cheney experienced an abnormal heart rhythm and canceled his campaign event in Illinois Wednesday, October 15, 2008. Vice President Dick Cheney, knowing his own body signs, apparently experience a sensation that alerted him that he knew he had some cardiac trouble. Atrial fibrillation can cause a fluttering feeling in the upper chest or lower throat — almost like chest congestion, as if one had to clear their chest with a cough. The pulse can also show skipped beats — an observation that the heartbeats don’t occur at regular intervals.

Cheney’s press secretary Megan Mitchell said that during a visit with doctors Wednesday morning, it was a recurrence of atrial fibrillation—an abnormal rhythm involving the upper chambers (let and right atria) of his heart.

Later today, Cheney will visit George Washington University Hospital for an outpatient procedure to restore his heart to normal rhythm. The vice president is expected to be released immediately after the procedure that restores normal heart rhythm.

Atrial fibrillation often shows no signs or symptoms and is generally life-threatening, but atrial fibrillation can result in palpitations, fainting, chest pain, or congestive heart failure. Long-term atrial fibrillation, which involves more stagnant pooling of blood in the upper chambers, can increase the chance of blood clots originating from the atria of the heart. The clotting and associated risk of stroke is increased when other risk factors (advancing age, previous stroke or TIA, hypertension and diabetes) accompany the occurrence of atrial fibrillation. Clots on the move (embolisms) can also affect other organs of the body.

Vice President Dick Cheney experienced a similar incident in November 2007.

The previous heart history of Vice President Dick Cheney is noted below:

JUN 29 2002 — Vice President Dick Cheney served as Acting President of the United States under the terms of the 25th Amendment to the Constitution. President Bush was undergoing a colonoscopy. Cheney acted as President from 11:09 UTC that day until Bush resumed control at 13:24 UTC.

Emergency Cardiac Catheterization
MAR 06 2001 — Vice President Dick Cheney underwent emergency cardiac catheterization late Monday afternoon to open a coronary artery that might be blocked. The vice president had experienced two brief episodes of pain and discomfort. The first episode occurred Saturday when Cheney was working out in the gym at the vice president’s official residence, according to information obtained from a conference call with Cheney’s senior advisors.

Heart Attack #4
NOV 22 2000 0300 — Cheney awoke with chest and shoulder discomfort. Confirmed as small heart attack after ruling out unstable angina. Cheney treated with a coronary artery stent.

NOV 07 2000 — George W. Bush and Dick Cheney win the United States presidential election, 2000

AUG 07 2000 — Time Magazine reports Dick Cheney exercises 30 minutes on a treadmill “several days a week.” The article Can Cheney Take the Heat was a lead up to election day in November 2000 and also reported a Dick Cheney 40-pound weight gain since 1993.

JULY 2000 — Cheney had had a normal exercise stress test in July 2000.

Selected as Vice Presidential Candidate for George W. Bush
JUL 25 2000 — Early 2000 while serving as the CEO of Halliburton, Cheney headed George W. Bush’s vice-presidential search committee. On July 25, after reviewing Cheney’s findings, Bush surprised some political pundits by asking Cheney to join the Republican ticket.

BMI, Height and Weight from Driver’s License Information
1997 — Cheney’s height and weight listed on his driver’s license issued was 5 feet 10 inches and 210 pounds, which calculates to a BMI value of 30.

The National Heart Lung and Blood Institute BMI Categories:
Underweight ( > 18.5 )
Normal weight ( 18.5 – 24.9 )
Overweight ( 25 – 29.9 )
Obese ( 30 + ) BMI Calculator — Calculate your BMI …

Served as United States Secretary of Defense
1989-1993 — Dick Cheney served as United States Secretary of Defense under the George H.W. Bush administration and during the Persian Gulf War. Heart history minimal and stable during this period.

Released from Hospital after Quadruple Bypass Surgery
AUG 27 1988 — House Republican leader Dick Cheney released from hospital after quadruple bypass surgery.

Quadruple Bypass Surgery
AUG 19 1988 — Dick Cheney underwent surgery of four vessels with blocked blood circulation to his heart. Blood flow was restored when doctors grafted unblocked vessels from other parts of the body to replace the blocked vessels.

Quadruple Bypass Surgery Decision
AUG 11 1988 — Dick Cheney decides to undergo optional coronary artery bypass surgery Friday after the Republican convention.

Heart Attack #3
Mild heart attack in August, 1988 

Coronary arteriography
Cardiac catheterization showed an increased extent of coronary heart disease.

Heart Attack #2
1984. Serving as U.S. Representative for the state of Wyoming.

Quit Smoking
1978 — Dick Cheney quit a three-pack-a-day cigarette habit.

Heart Attack #1

No information available on Dick Cheney’s exercise program or workouts.

Wikipedia: atrial fibrillation atrial fibrillation —

CNN: Cheney released from hospital – March 5 2001

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