President Obama quits smoking officially, doctor says
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is in excellent health and tobacco free, his doctor said Monday in the results of the president's second physical exam since taking office.
In the two-page report released by the White House, Dr. Jeffrey C. Kuhlman also said Obama is physically active, eats a healthy diet, stays at a healthy weight, and on occasion drinks alcohol in moderation.
"The president is in excellent health and 'fit for duty,'" Kuhlman wrote. "All clinical data indicate he will remain so for the duration of his presidency."
Obama, who turned 50 in August, seems to have improved his health on some fronts since his last physical, which Kuhlman conducted in February 2010.
At that time, Kuhlman said Obama should stick with "smoking cessation efforts," and also said his cholesterol level had crept to borderline high and he should alter his diet accordingly.
Since then, Obama, who chewed nicotine gun, appears to have quit smoking entirely — an achievement his wife, Michelle Obama, announced earlier this year. And his cholesterol is now described as "ideal."
Obama's total cholesterol level now stands at 193, compared with 209 in February 2010. His LDL, or bad cholesterol, is now 110, down from 138 last year.
Obama frequently works out and plays basketball and golfs.
The physical released Monday was conducted last week at the White House. Kuhlman, a Navy captain, recommended that the president have his next physical in December 2012.
The president was checked for and found free of colon cancer with a virtual colonoscopy last year, so he wasn't due to be tested again.
The new report says he was also screened for prostate cancer using a PSA blood test. That's a test that the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommended against earlier this month, saying it can do more harm than good in part because many tumors found are too slow-growing to be a threat. The report cites "informed patient request" in giving Obama the screening. His PSA level, or prostate-specific antigen, was found to be low.
The president is 6-foot-1 and weighs 181.3 pounds, according to the report. His blood pressure was recorded at 107 over 71, up from 105 over 62 in February 2010, but still well within the normal range.
The doctor said Obama's vision was 20/20 in both eyes for both distance and near vision.
The report found a "well-healed lower lip laceration" — apparently a reference to an injury Obama sustained about a year ago when he was elbowed in the lip while playing basketball and had to get stitches.
The president also has "periodic physical therapy" to deal with recurrent upper right back pain, and he had benign skin tags removed from his neck.
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