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Trump free of Covid-19 symptoms for over 24 hours, says physician

Bloomberg October 8 | Updated on October 08, 2020

US President Donald Trump stands on the balcony outside of the Blue Room after his return to the White House   -  AP

But the White House statement omits several key details about the President’s condition

US President Donald Trump returned to the Oval Office on Wednesday after his doctor reported he had been free of Covid-19 symptoms for more than 24 hours.

Trump’s oxygen levels and respiratory rate are stable, White House physician Sean Conley wrote in a memorandum released on Wednesday.

His physical exam and vital signs, including oxygen saturation and respiratory rate, all remain stable and in normal range, Conley said in a statement that omitted several key details about the president’s condition.

Trump left the White House residence after remaining isolated there since returning late Monday from a three-day hospital stay because of the illness. His time in the Oval Office — where he was briefed on coronavirus stimulus talks and the latest hurricane to threaten US shores — was his first known time back in the West Wing of the complex since he came back from hospital on Monday.

Conley said that Trump has been fever-free for more than four days and has not needed nor received any supplemental oxygen since initial hospitalisation.

“He wants to speak to the American people, he will do so soon,” White House Deputy Press Secretary Brian Morgenstern told reporters on Wednesday afternoon. “I don’t have an exact time or a definite way he’ll do that. As you’ve seen, there have been Twitter videos that are a pretty easy and effective way for him to get out. That’s certainly something that we're always considering.”

The White House has declined to release several basic medical details about the President’s case. On Monday, the White House released specific measures of some of Trump’s vital signs, such as his blood oxygen level, blood pressure, temperature, heart rate and breathing rate. Wednesday’s letter from Conley did not include any of those specific details. The White House also has not confirmed whether Trump received a planned fifth and final dose of remdesivir, one of three drugs given to him to fight the virus.

“This letter didn’t add anything, I can assure you of that,” Eric Topol, Director of Scripps Research Translational Institute, said of Conley’s statement. “Its not been forthright and they’ve still not disclosed many of the truths that are still needed.”

Conley’s letter began with: “The President this morning says I feel great!”

Trump, in samples taken on Monday, had detectable levels of antibodies as compared with samples taken on Thursday, when the President had tested positive, Conley said. Conley has previously said that he gave Trump an 8 gram dose of Regenerons antibody treatment on Friday. He had the highest dose known to mankind received back on Friday, Topol said.

In a statement, Regeneron said that, given the timing, it is likely that Trump’s test was detecting antibodies from their treatment, though acknowledged the test wouldn’t distinguish between those and antibodies Trump had developed on his own.

Published on October 08, 2020

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