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Saturday, November 29, 2003

As Obesity Rises, Health Care Indignities Multiply: " As Obesity Rises, Health Care Indignities Multiply

Published: November 29, 2003

hen Mark Rosenthal suffered a stroke, he was too heavy and wide for a stretcher, so he made the jarring, bouncing dash to the hospital lying on an ambulance floor. The ride injured his back, and he felt as if his own weight would suffocate him. At the hospital, doctors wanted to give him an M.R.I. scan, but he could not fit into the machine.

But in that ordeal last June, Mr. Rosenthal's gravest humiliation came from something as simple as having to go to the bathroom. He was in no shape to walk to the cramped bathroom � he might not have been able to fit, anyway � and the hospital's portable commodes and bedpans could not hold his 450 pounds. So, he recalled, hospital workers told him to go in his bed, on himself, saying they would clean it up afterward.
'I just cried,' said Mr. Rosenthal, 51, the treasurer of District Council 37, the New York City employees' union. 'I refused to eat anything for six or seven days, hoping I wouldn't have to go again.'
Obesity is the fastest-growing major health problem in the United States. In 2000, 31 percent of American adults were obese, up from 23 percent in 1990 and 13 percent in 1960, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention"

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eureka, California, United States
As Popeye once said,"I ams what I am." But then again maybe I'm not