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...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!