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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has advised President Donald Trump not to take hydroxychloroquine.
In doing so, Pelosi described the 73-year-old Trump as "morbidly obese."
Standing at 6-foot-3, Trump weighed in at 243 pounds in 2019.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has issued some health recommendations for President Donald Trump after he told reporters he had been taking an unproven coronavirus treatment daily for about 10 days.
"He's our president, and I would rather he not be taking something that has not been approved by the scientists, especially in his age group and his, shall we say, weight group," Pelosi said during an interview with the CNN host Anderson Cooper on Monday.
"I think it's not a good idea," she added.
Pelosi went on to describe the 73-year-old Trump as "morbidly obese," citing his prior White House physicals that placed him slightly above the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's criteria for being "obese."
Trump stood 6-foot-3 and weighed in at 243 pounds in 2019 — 4 pounds greater than in the previous year. His body mass index based on those numbers would be 30.4, slightly above the CDC's cutoff, 30.0, between overweight and obese.
During a press conference on Monday, Trump said he took hydroxychloroquine, a drug used to prevent malaria, as a preventative measure against the novel coronavirus. Trump's physician confirmed in a letter that Trump tested negative for the coronavirus and that they concluded "the potential benefit from treatment outweighed the relative risks."
"I take it," Trump told reporters. "I would've told you that three, four days ago, but we never had a chance because you never asked me the question."
Scientists, however, have not concluded whether hydroxychloroquine is effective or safe as a coronavirus treatment or preventive measure. The Food and Drug Administration has warned against using the drug "outside of the hospital setting or a clinical trial due to risk of heart rhythm problems" and has said it could trigger other problems, including death.
Trump, however, has long spoken favorably of hydroxychloroquine.
"Here's my evidence: I get a lot of positive calls about it," Trump said on Monday. "The only negative I've heard was the study where they gave it — was it the VA? — with people that aren't big Trump fans."
"But I get a lot of tremendously positive news on the hydroxy," Trump added. "And I say ... what do you have to lose?"
Despite Pelosi's comments, it is unclear whether BMI is a contributing factor to complications with hydroxychloroquine.
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