The presidential polyp

Ever get upset because those in power seem to have it so much better than the rest of us tired, poor and diseased masses? Well, don’t let the stress get to you (that stuff kills—just ask Woodrow Wilson!), because throughout U.S. history our fearless leaders have proven just as susceptible to failings of the earthly vessel as their constituents. Just how sick did these fearless leaders get? The folks at have referenced sources as reliable as Wikipedia to find out. Here’s a choice selection of some of the sickest, illest, and, one might assume, most doped-up leaders of the free world.

Presidential medical histories

George Washington: malaria, smallpox, tuberculosis, dysentery, boils (carbuncles), tooth loss, hearing loss, presbyopia, infertility, quinsy, pneumonia and strep infection.

John Adams: Hair loss, depression, boils, heartburn, falling into a coma and rheumatism.

Andrew Jackson (right): sword wound, smallpox, depression, gunshot wound, malaria, dysentery, frequent headaches, tuberculosis, edema (dropsy) and heart failure.

Abraham Lincoln: color blindness, crossed eyes, presbyopia, concussion, fractured jaw, malaria, depression, dental phobia, toothache, smallpox, hair loss and fatal gunshot wound.

Franklin D. Roosevelt: polio, hypertension, hemorrhoids, anemia, anorexia, weight loss, indigestion, sebaceous cyst, atherosclerosis, cardiomyopathy, angina, cholecystitis and cerebral hemorrhage.

John F. Kennedy: scarlet fever, measles, knee injury, bronchitis, jaundice, rubella, whooping cough, colitis, osteoporosis, presbyopia, backaches, Addison’s disease and fatal gunshot wound.

Richard Nixon (left): phlebitis, “furious eye blinking” and stroke.

Jimmy Carter: severe chronic hemorrhoids.

Bill Clinton: gastroesophageal reflux, rectal bleeding, allergy, torn knee tendon, sebaceous cyst, basal cell carcinoma, acne rosacea, angina, atherosclerosis and coronary artery disease.

George W. Bush: Hemorrhoids, benign colon polyps, actinic keratosis, loss of consciousness and knee injury.