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Medical mistake claims life of American hero

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola Fact Checked

Story at-a-glance -

  • In 2012, Armstrong, aged 82, underwent heart surgery at Mercy Health Hospital in Cincinnati, Ohio. He died two weeks later. His two sons insisted his death was caused by medical error
  • An anonymous source leaked documents to the press showing the hospital paid the Armstrong family a $6 million malpractice settlement. The sender hoped bringing the information to light might help save lives
  • When nurses removed the wires for Armstrong’s temporary pacemaker, he began to bleed. Armstrong was brought into the catheterization lab for evaluation rather than straight to the operating room — a nonstandard decision that cost him his life
  • Armstrong’s case is a perfect example of the indiscriminate nature of lethal medical errors; 19% of elderly patients are injured by medical care in the U.S., and those injured have nearly double the death rate compared to those who receive proper treatment
  • July 20, 2019, we celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing. In a riveting three-part documentary series, PBS explores the space race that led to American astronauts becoming the first men to set foot on the moon

Like many of you, I clearly remember watching the black and white images of Neil Armstrong first walking on the moon, at home with my family. It was very moving for me and I was inspired, like many, to become an astronaut. Thankfully, I changed that course and redirected to medicine.

July 20, 2019, we celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing. In a riveting three-part documentary series, PBS explores the space race that led to American astronauts becoming the first men to set foot on the moon.


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