Democratic Senator John Fetterman, who has been undergoing treatment for clinical depression at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, is expected to return to the Senate during the week of April 17.
Democratic Sen. John Fetterman, who checked himself into Walter Reed National Military Medical Center last month for treatment for clinical depression, will return to the Senate during the week of April 17, according to a person familiar with his plans.
The Pennsylvania Democrat has made progress throughout his treatment, the source said, adding that his stay has been this long because doctors have tried to ensure his medication was effective.
The Senate will be on a two-week recess starting Monday.
Fetterman reportedly had speech processing issues related to a stroke and required closed captioning technology at his desk in the Senate chamber. He was later hospitalized twice in February 2023, first for lightheadedness and then for severe major depression. He has been living and working at Walter Reed Army Medical Center since.
In March, Adam Jentleson, the Chief of Staff for Senator John Fetterman, gave an update on the Senator’s health by sharing these phots (below).
Earlier this year, Fetterman’s wife left the country with the kids to go up to Canada. Her reasoning: too much media attention. However, she felt that she still wanted to share her trip with photos and a tweet to share to everyone.
We also talked about how joy and fun can and must still exist, even when someone we love is in pain. And tomorrow? Who knows. Will try all over again. ❤️
— Gisele Barreto Fetterman (@giselefetterman) February 24, 2023
On February 8, 2023, Fetterman was hospitalized overnight after feeling lightheaded during a U.S. Senate retreat. However, his office reported that this hospitalization was unrelated to his stroke, and he was in good spirits and talking with his staff and family. On February 16, 2023, Fetterman checked himself into Walter Reed Hospital for clinical depression. He would undergo treatment and has since remained hospitalized.
It was later reported that Fetterman had trouble hearing as well. Due to his auditory processing challenges, Senator Fetterman depended largely on a tablet to transcribe spoken words for him. The severity of his hearing difficulties is unpredictable, and they tend to exacerbate when he is in stressful or unfamiliar situations. The senator has likened the experience to attempting to decipher the garbled voice of the teacher in the “Peanuts” comic strip, whose speech is incomprehensible.
“Post-stroke depression is very, very common. Estimates are somewhere up to a third of patients with stroke will have depression at some point after their stroke,” one Dr. said during an interview.
His transition has been “extraordinarily challenging” due to”strains of his recovery, which left him with a physical impairment and serious mental health challenges,” ThePoliticianInsider reported.
Initially, he was admitted to the hospital back in May 13, 2022, after suffering an ischemic stroke caused by a clot related to his irregular heart rhythm, atrial fibrillation. He was released from the hospital on May 22, 2022. In a letter written in early June 2022, Chandra reported that Fetterman was in stable condition and would fully recover as long as he followed a healthy lifestyle and took his medications.
Fetterman expressed regret for ignoring his health after being diagnosed with atrial fibrillation in 2017. For five years, he did not see a doctor or continue his medications. However, his primary care physician provided a medical update in October 2022, stating that Fetterman had significantly improved communication skills and spoke intelligently during his examination. Although his stroke had left him with symptoms of an auditory processing disorder, Fetterman attended speech therapy, regular exercise, and took heart medication.