Richard Nixon, the 37th President of the United States, is perhaps best known for his unwavering stance on topics he was passionate about and for being the first and only president (so far) to voluntarily resign from office. A surprising fact which has been hidden about him until now, however, is that Nixon suffered from both Addison’s Disease as well as extreme paranoia. The latter infliction was reportedly so bad that he was required to regularly see a shrink in order to better manage his symptoms and extreme feelings of unease.
Earlier today, May 5, it was reported that John F. Kennedy and his camp had gone out of their way to cover up the California native’s unfortunate medical predicament. Indeed, the story was uncovered by a private investigator named Guenther Reinhardt, a former journalist who had spied on the likes of the original FBI bigwig, J. Edgar Hoover and had personally covered Adolf Hitler’s 1924 trial for treason. Through careful tracking and cunning deceit (the PI is said to have used the ruse of wanting to locate a legitimate therapist for a politician that he knew, a politician which of course did not end up being real,) Reinhardt is said to have located a man named Arnold Hutschnecker, a psychiatrist who worked in the Manhattan area of New York.
Upon discussing with the doctor, the private investigator was able to gather information detailing the fact that the former Massachusetts Senator had actually been seeking professional help for some time at that point; in fact, the two are said to have been engaging in therapy visits for almost ten years. As well as tricking the medical professional into revealing personal information about Nixon, it is also rumored that Reinhardt managed to sneak a quick look into the former POTUS’s personal file while Hutschnecker was out of the room, although this has not been confirmed.
Nixon had come to ask for the shrink’s aid due to excessive insomnia, back pain and for the casualty effects of being overly stressed due to the job description of what he was engaging in for a living. He is also said to have developed deep paranoia due to being overworked and concerned that other political rivals were gunning for his position and would do anything to con him out of his place in the White House.
Addison’s Disease is a rare, chronic endocrine system (the endocrine system is in reference to the gland collection of an organism that directly secretes hormones into the circulatory system, which are then carried in the direction of distant target organs) infliction in which there is not sufficient production of steroid hormones through the adrenal glands. The condition leads to much discomfort and pain, particularly in the abdomen area. If not treated properly, it can lead to a severe illness called Addisonian Crisis, which can riddle the patient with dangerously low blood pressure and can lead to them falling into a coma. Nixon’s severity level of Addison’s was so bad that he had to be regularly injected with substantial amounts of cortisone in order to keep his symptoms at bay, a treatment without which it was likely he could have died.
By Rebecca Grace
Photo by Tim Evanson – Creativecommons Flickr License