Leader of the Opposition, Robert Corbin, yesterday broke the silence on his treatment. It turns out that it was not his heart. It was diagnosed that his chest pains arose from the malfunctioning of his digestive system, including a dysfunctional gallbladder.
As such, surgery was determined necessary for the removal of the gallbladder to be followed by a course of medical treatment related to the stomach.
Corbin yesterday told the media that he returned to Guyana on Saturday last but could not meet with the Press before, because of a sore throat due to a cold he contracted shortly before his return.
According to Corbin, there was an initial belief by his physicians that his chest pains were heart-related and while a heart attack was ruled out very early, they considered it necessary to have urgent investigations done to evaluate the functioning of his heart.
He said that it was for that reason he was transferred to the Caribbean Heart Institute (CHI), which was under the ultimate control of doctors in the United States.
Corbin said that he was advised that his doctors requested his urgent travel to the USA because “although new facilities have been constructed here for angiography, such procedure could not be carried out without the relevant specialist surgeons on location to treat any abnormality that may be determined during the procedure.”
However, this newspaper understands that doctors capable of conducting such procedures are always available at the facility.
There are three doctors that work on a shift system at the CHI and as such the facility is manned 24 hours per day
Corbin reported that on his arrival in the United States, he was admitted to The Heart Center, St Francis Hospital in Long Island, where he underwent cardiac catheterization.
Cardiac catheterization is a procedure to examine blood flow to the heart and test how well the heart is pumping.
A doctor inserts a thin plastic tube (catheter) into an artery or vein in the arm or leg.
From there it can be advanced into the chambers of the heart or into the coronary arteries.
This test can measure blood pressure within the heart and how much oxygen is in the blood. It is also used to get information about the pumping ability of the heart muscle.
“The angiography revealed normal left ventricle function and the coronary angiography revealed normal coronary arteries…in summary, they found me to be a person with chest pains, but with a perfect functioning heart.”
Consequently, the doctors in the US recommended further medical therapy to deal with his symptoms, the determination of which required several tests and evaluation.
After undergoing several medical tests, including a complete abdominal sonogram, a HIDA/Biliary scan and an endoscopy, it was diagnosed that his pains arose from the malfunctioning of his digestive system including a dysfunctional gallbladder.
Surgery was subsequently determined necessary for the removal of the gallbladder to be followed by a course of medical treatment related to his stomach.
Corbin first took ill on April 25, last, and was immediately hospitalised at the Woodlands Hospital after experiencing severe chest pains.
Since then, he was under the care and supervision of several doctors, surgeons and specialists in Georgetown and the USA who were able to provide the necessary care and attention and who have now pronounced him to be in good health.
The opposition leader ruled out speculation that he had any previous heart conditions and this caused his US doctors to have him medivacced to the states saying that he has had no history of heart problems.
According to Corbin, every September he has an annual medical checkup and the only thing found previously was a minor build up of plaque in a capillary but that was treated.
He added that the only other condition was a high blood pressure for which he is on medication.
It is understood that the Caribbean Heart Institute was in a position to adequately treat Corbin’s ailments but he was flown to the US at the request of the family and Corbin’s doctors. The State funded the $10M Bill.
Following a period of silence that hovered over his condition, and the repeated calls for disclosure, Corbin retaliated by saying he wished to clarify that he had no problems with disclosing what were the medical expenses paid by the Government whenever it becomes available.
He pointed out also, that he had no problems with the disclosure of the general nature of his illness.
“However, I am convinced that the right of full disclosure on my medical condition is one to be exercised by me and no one else…There is therefore absolutely no basis for some of the comments and criticisms made…Some of those observations were baseless, distasteful and unethical.”
People who wanted to know contended that as a public figure, they were entitled to know details of Corbin’s ailment.
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