October 6, 2020

Trump is out of the hospital—but he's not 'out of the woods,' his doctors say

Daily Briefing

    President Trump on Monday was discharged from Walter Reed Medical Center, returning to the White House where he'll continue being treated for Covid-19.  Sean Conley, the president's physician, said while Trump is doing well, he "may not be entirely out of the woods yet."

    Trump discharged from the hospital

    The White House has announced that Trump first began experiencing symptoms of Covid-19 on Thursday, when he tested positive for the disease.  Conley said Trump on Thursday had been experiencing fatigue, a mild cough, and a stuffy nose. Trump was hospitalized on Friday after his oxygen levels dropped.

    In a news briefing on Monday, Conley said the president's oxygen levels had dropped below 94%—a sign that Politico reports typically indicates a moderate or severe case of the disease. However, Conley said Trump's oxygen levels had risen to 97%, his "slight cough" was gone, and he'd been fever free for at least 72 hours. Conley noted that Trump had never complained of muscle aches.

    "He's up and back to his old self, predominantly," Conley said.

    In a tweet hours before he was discharged, Trump said he was "[f]eeling really good!" and "better than I did 20 years ago!"

    However, Conley added that the president's medical team is "cautiously optimistic and on guard," partly because of the unique care that Trump has received. So far, Trump has received the antiviral drug remdesivir, as well as dexamethasone and an experimental cocktail of monoclonal antibodies for Covid-19.

    "We're in a bit of uncharted territory when it comes to a patient who received the therapies he has so early in the course," Conley said. However, Conley said, "the team and I agree that all our evaluations—and most importantly [Trump's] clinical status—support the president's safe return home, where he'll be supported by world-class medical care 24/7."

    Trump received his fourth dose of remdesivir on Monday before he was discharged and will receive a fifth dose at the White House Tuesday, Conley said, adding that Trump is continuing to take dexamethasone.

    Conley said Trump will be closely monitored for the next few days, saying, "If we can get through to Monday" of next week, then doctors will "take that final deep sigh of relief." According to STAT News, a key concern with Covid-19 patients is that they may appear to be recovering shortly before their condition worsens.

    However, Conley said the White House's medical unit is equipped to provide the level of care Trump has been receiving at the hospital. "Every day a patient stays in the hospital unnecessarily is a risk to themselves," Conley said. "And right now, there's nothing that's being done upstairs here that we can't safely conduct down home" (Oprysko/Forgey, Politico, 10/5; Joseph, STAT News, 10/5; Rummler, Axios, 10/5; Sellers et. al., Washington Post, 10/5).

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