President John F. Kennedy (JFK) had a complex medical history that is now thought to be an autoimmune polyglandular syndrome type 2 with Addison’s disease and hypothyroidism. He also had gastrointestinal symptoms from adolescence, which now fit well with coeliac disease. In addition, he had a chronic back problem, which contributed to a chronic pain syndrome. This review looks at JFK’s various diseases and focusses on the history of coeliac disease, as well as its presentation. JFK’s Irish ancestry supports the hypothesis of a coeliac disease started early in his youth.
- medical history
- coeliac disease
- adrenal disorders
- thyroid disease
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Correction notice This article has been corrected since it appeared Online First. Table 1, ††† footnote has been clarified.
Contributors DL and DM planned the study; All authors wrote the manuscript; SD polished the manuscript; SD submitted the manuscript and is responsible for the overall content as guarantor.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Patient consent for publication Not required.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.