Sen. Bernie Sanders revealed on Tuesday that he regrets not paying more attention to some of the health symptoms that he experienced leading up to his recent heart attack.
“But I’ll tell you one thing that I look forward to doing. I must confess that I was dumb,” Sanders told a reporter as he was leaving for a cardiology appointment. “I was born, and thank God, I have a lot of energy. And you know, during this campaign I have been doing in some cases three or four rallies a day running all over the state, Iowa, New Hampshire, wherever.”
“And yet, I in the last month or two just was more fatigued than I usually have been and I should have listened to those symptoms. I should have listened to those symptoms,” he continued. “So, if there is any message that I hope we can get out there, it is that I want people to pay attention to the symptoms. And you know, when you’re hurting, when you’re fatigued, when you have pain in your chest, listen to it.”
NEW: @BernieSanders is meeting a cardiologist this morning. A new doctor he has not met with before. Before he left he told reporters that he was "dumb" and should've listened to the warning signs his body was sending him prior to his heart attack. pic.twitter.com/ncJTx5o7x1
— Ryan Nobles (@ryanobles) October 8, 2019
Sanders’ remarks come a week after the Democratic presidential candidate had a heart attack while at a campaign stop in Las Vegas, Nevada. His campaign initially described the incident as a stent procedure after a fleeting episode of chest pain, and waited an additional three days to reveal the more serious diagnosis.
“After presenting to an outside facility with chest pain, Sen. Sanders was diagnosed with a myocardial infarction. He was immediately transferred to Desert Springs Hospital Medical Center,” Sanders’ treating physicians, Arturo Marchand Jr. and Arjun Gururaj, said in a statement.
“The Senator was stable upon arrival and taken immediately to the cardiac catheterization laboratory, at which time two stents were placed in a blocked coronary artery in a timely fashion. All other arteries were normal,” the statement continued. “His hospital course was uneventful with good expected progress. He was discharged with instructions to follow up with his personal physician.”
The 78-year-old Vermont lawmaker notably used his hospital visit as an opportunity to promote his signature universal health care plan.
“Thanks for all the well wishes. I’m feeling good. I’m fortunate to have good health care and great doctors and nurses helping me to recover,” Sanders tweeted at the time. “None of us know when a medical emergency might affect us. And no one should fear going bankrupt if it occurs. Medicare for All!”
The incident has raised questions regarding his fitness for the office of the presidency. After he was admitted to the hospital following his heart attack, he subsequently canceled all of his upcoming campaign events. However, Sanders’ wife, Jane, said on Thursday that he will be back in time for the Democratic National Committee’s (DNC) next primary debate in October.
Sanders and his wife flew back to their home in Burlington, Vermont, on Saturday, one day after he was released from the hospital.
As he left the airport, he told reporters, “I’m feeling great, thank you.”