Doctor’s Notes Offer Closer Look at Sen. Fetterman’s Treatment Upon Release From Hospital

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Doctor’s notes say Fetterman had stopped eating and drinking

Pennsylvania U.S. Sen. John Fetterman was discharged Friday from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Washington, D.C., where he was being treated for major depression. Fetterman checked himself in for treatment on Feb. 15.

A week before that, he had been in George Washington University Hospital in Washington, with symptoms of lightheadedness, which was a concern because the Democrat senator had a stroke on the campaign trail the weekend before the May 2022 primary.

On Friday he was back in his hometown, Braddock, a statement from his staff said.

Fetterman’s medical care in the neuropsychiatry unit was led by Dr. David Williamson, neuropsychiatry chief and medical director, who said in the statement that Fetterman’s depression is now in remission.

The Senate is in recess for the next two weeks. During that time, Fetterman will be with his family in Pennsylvania, and return to Washington when the Senate session resumes on April 17, the statement said.

“I am so happy to be home. I’m excited to be the father and husband I want to be, and the senator Pennsylvania deserves. Pennsylvanians have always had my back, and I will always have theirs,” Fetterman said in a statement from his communications team. “I am extremely grateful to the incredible team at Walter Reed. The care they provided changed my life. I will have more to say about this soon, but for now I want everyone to know that depression is treatable, and treatment works. This isn’t about politics—right now there are people who are suffering with depression in red counties and blue counties. If you need help, please get help.”

Much of the media attention surrounding Fetterman’s hospitalization was complimentary to him for getting help and sharing his health publicly.

Doctor’s Notes

His team provided Fetterman’s doctor’s discharge briefing, offing more detail about Fetterman’s treatment.

On admission in February, Fetterman had severe symptoms of depression with low energy and motivation, minimal speech, poor sleep, slowed thinking, slowed movement, feelings of guilt and worthlessness, but no suicidal ideation, the briefing said. Symptoms had progressively worsened over the preceding eight weeks and Fetterman had stopped eating and taking fluids, causing him to develop low blood pressure potentially affecting brain circulation. He was admitted on a voluntary basis.

By Beth Brelje

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