Not intentionally, of course. It was just the result of bad medical judgment, according to Dr. Morris Wasserman, an elderly physician with whom I talked this morning at the local cappuccino café. I wouldn’t accept Dr. Wasserman’s opinion on most subjects (he’s a raving Marxist of the looniest sort) but as a retired hematologist, he probably knows his stuff. He says the doctors just wanted to show off by healing the most powerful man in Israel, but they goofed.
Sharon had a tiny hole between the left and right chambers of his heart. He’d had it all his life and it wasn’t a dire problem. Lots of people have it. Before we are born we don’t breathe, naturally, and our blood from the placenta has already been purified by our mother’s lungs. Logically, then, we don’t have to send the blood all the way around through the lungs before sending it back to the left chambers of the heart and out to the body. For good reason we are born with a hole in the heart Then when our lungs start to work, the hole normally fills in, though for some people it never does. It wasn’t a problem for Sharon.
But the doctors took pride in having Sharon as a patient, and decided to operate and close the hole. To do cardiac surgery, it is necessary to give drugs that keep the blood from clotting. They started administering these anticoagulants to Sharon days before his surgery. The dosage is supposed to depend on the patient's body weight. Sharon weighed 300 pounds, so his dose was calculated on that basis. But according to Wasserman, his “real” weight was 150 pounds – plus a lot of fat. That extra fat doesn’t have as much blood circulating through it as muscle tissue does. The overdosing of Sharon caused his hemorrhage. If they had left him alone, he’d still be an active man.
Is this true? It sounds plausible to me. Why haven’t we heard this explanation in the newspaper? That’s where Wasserman’s Marxism comes into play. To him, the explanation is simple: the capitalist system keeps the truth from being told. Wasserman himself “studies” the New York Times every day, trying to read between the lines and figure out what they are trying not to tell us. From this point in the conversation, he was off on a rant, which I will not share with you. As I left, he was calling out, urging me to get the Modern Library edition of Marx because I had not studied Capital properly. But I said I had been overdosed on Marx in graduate school and am still recovering from it.