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September 6, 2000
Vajpayee to consult expert in US on knee problem
Onkar Singh in New Delhi
Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee will visit orthopaedic surgeon Dr A Ranawat, for advice on his knee that has been troubling him since November last year, soon after his arrival in New York.
"Despite medication, his knee problem has become acute and now his knee pains even while resting. We had to take an expert's opinion. Hence, we requested Dr Ranawat to examine his knee and give his advice,'' Dr Randeep Guleria, Vajpayee's personal physician told rediff.com.
Dr Guleria, who has been with the All India Institute of Medical Sciences since 1992, denied that the prime minister would be given pain-killers before departure for the United States on Wednesday night.
"A decision on a knee operation will be taken after consultations with Dr Ranawat," Dr Guleria said.
He said media hype about the problem was unnecessary. "I am confident that he will complete his 14-day tour without hitch. We are ready for any emergency," he added.
"Except for minor illnesses, the prime minister is in good health, compared to people of his age. Osteoarthritis [bone inflammation] of the knee, which flares up periodically, is a cause for concern. However, it will heal," he said
Dr Guleria also denied that the prime minister was suffering from cancer.
Not all doctors share Guleria's optimism about the knee problem. "The prime minister should have been advised to undergo a knee operation long back, instead of letting the problem aggravate to such an extent that it has now become the focus of media attention. I hope the US media does not focus on the problem. I also hope he does not have to curtail his tour due to the problem,'' said a senior physician.
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