Medicine: His Majesty's Foot

What ails Britain's George VI? All public engagements would be canceled "over a period of some months." The official bulletins had been medically vague. But at week's end it was learned that the King suffers from a variation of Buerger's disease,* mostly affecting his right foot. Other more frightening names for it: presenile gangrene, thrombo-angiitis obliterans.

The trouble begins when inflammation in the arteries or veins slows or shuts down circulation of the blood; ulcers develop—or, in severe cases, gangrene. The disease usually affects arteries near the body's surface, more often in the legs than in the arms. The King also...

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