White House concealed Bush illness
Bush treated for Lyme disease
August 8, 2007 at 5:14 PM EDT
WASHINGTON U.S. President George W. Bush was treated
for Lyme disease last August, the White House
announced Wednesday after failing to disclose the
problem for nearly a year.
Mr. Bush was treated for what his doctors described as
early, localized Lyme disease after developing the
characteristic bullseye rash.
Lyme disease is a tick-borne infection that, if left
untreated, can cause arthritis and other problems.
Symptoms can include lethargy, joint pain, fever,
limping and loss of appetite. A bacterial disease, it
can be eradicated with antibiotic treatment in the
early stages. It can recur in some patients, but Mr.
Bush's doctors say it hasn't with him.
White House spokesman Scott Stanzel said the treatment
was not disclosed earlier because it happened after he
had his last physical, on Aug. 1, 2006. He said
doctors decided not to do blood tests to determine for
certain that he had Lyme disease because the treatment
worked and he never progressed to other symptoms.
It was a rash, he said. It's not uncommon for the
president to have tick bites when he's out biking.