Striking a Nerve: Heinz Kerry Recovers
“Striking a Nerve” is a blog by John Gever for readers interested in neurology.
Less than 4 months after a mysterious seizure sent Teresa Heinz Kerry to Massachusetts General Hospital in critical condition, she is back at work and touting her recovery as “miraculous.”
The philanthropist, married to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, granted her first interview since leaving a Boston-area rehab hospital to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, during a visit last week. She was in town to resume her oversight of the $1.4-billion Heinz Endowments, the foundation established by the ketchup-making family of her first husband, the late Sen. John Heinz (R-Pa.).
Heinz Kerry, 75, was at her Nantucket home on July 7 when she collapsed and was rushed first to the island’s hospital and from there to Mass General. Doctors there determined she had suffered a seizure but puzzled for days over the cause, ruling out stroke and brain tumors.
See a Video of the Owner of Luminosity
She had been treated for breast cancer in 2009 with radiation and chemotherapy, but, she told the Post-Gazette, that was not directly related to the seizure.
Rather, she said, it was the result of a concussion she had suffered that year “that was not properly treated at all.” She said she had noticed “a lot of signs” of injury during the succeeding 4 years.
Four days after arriving at Mass General, she was moved to Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Boston’s Charlestown neighborhood, from which she was discharged July 27. Heinz Kerry said her sense of balance was severely disrupted and she had difficulty focusing mentally.
Heinz Kerry told the Post-Gazette that she credited the brain-game Lumosity, as well as the cognitive challenges she encountered during her first career as a language interpreter, with speeding her recovery.
She is now able to travel between Boston, Washington, and Pittsburgh, but is not yet up to accompanying her husband on his many overseas trips.
See a video done by the owner of Luminosity