Corona in ICU due to possible heart attack: Marquez

Posted at 05/23/2012 1:40 AM | Updated as of 05/23/2012 10:14 AM

MANILA, Philippines (6th UPDATE) - Chief Justice Renato Corona was brought to Medical City's intensive care unit in Pasig early Wednesday morning because of a possible heart attack, Supreme Court spokesman and Court Administrator Jose Midas Marquez said.

Marquez, in an interview with radio dzMM, said a blood test on Corona showed he had elevated Troponin T levels.

He said the diagnosis is a possible heart attack.

Hospital officials did not immediately confirm the report.

Marquez expects Corona's doctors to issue a medical bulletin around 8 a.m. or 9 a.m. Wednesday.

He said Corona was still in his regular room when he left Medical City around midnight.

Return to impeachment court

He said the chief justice wanted to return to the Senate impeachment court Wednesday.

"Although nakatutok nga iyung mga duktor sa Medical City, bago ako umalis, napag-usapan din namin na siya ay babalik sa Senado bukas at haharap sa impeachment court," he said.

"Pero makalipas ang ilang minuto, pagdating ko dito sa aking bahay, ay nakatanggap ako ng text message na mula sa pamilya na medyo nagkaroon ng bagong development, at siya ay inililipat sa ICU for a possible heart attack," Marquez said.

"Medyo nakakalungkot. Medyo binabantayan ang kaniyang kundisyon, at mabuting ilipat na siya sa ICU," he added.

"Bago ako umalis, sinigurado  ko kung ano ba talaga ang kaniyang nararamdaman at kung tingin niya at makakapunta siya sa impeachment kanina. Talagang gusto na niyang matapos ito," he said.

Marquez said he does not know if Corona will be able to take the witness stand Wednesday amid the new development regarding his health.

He said Corona's doctors were against having the chief justice attend his trial anew.

"Medyo tumututol na iyung mga duktor na kausap namin. Sinasabi ko nga na baka puwedeng payagan niyo at humarap ng sandali at ipaliwanag iyung kaniyang kundisyon," he said.

"Napapagbintangan siyang nag walk-out kanina," he said. "Umoo naman siya sa akin, 'hangga't kaya ko, gagawin ko,'" he added. "Kaya lang, nito ngang pag-uwi ko, nakatanggap naman tayo ng isang malungkot na text message na siya ay dinadala na sa ICU."

One of his lawyers, Tranquil Salvador III, told media that Corona is now under sedation.

Corona was brought to Medical City after he left the Senate impeachment court on Tuesday night, defense spokesperson Atty. Karen Jimeno earlier said.

DZMM's Robert Mano reported that Corona arrived at Medical City around 8 p.m.

He allegedly entered discreetly through the basement and not the main entrance.

Corona was reportedly accompanied by his wife and 2 men in white.

The chief justice allegedly suffered from hypoglycemia while he was on the witness stand in his trial on Tuesday, which triggered his apparent walkout from the Senate session hall after he gave a statement.

Jimeno: No walk out

Jimeno, meanwhile, claimed that Corona did not intend to walk out of the Senate session hall.

"It's unfair to conclude he walked out. He wasn't feeling well. He declared near the end he wanted to be excused," she said.

Jimeno also said the defense team did not know the contents of Corona's opening statement beforehand.

After his apparent walkout, Corona returned to the session hall on a wheelchair.

However, his chief defense counsel Serafin Cuevas said his client was not fit to continue taking part in the day's hearings.

Cuevas apologized for Corona's apparent walkout and asked for understanding from the court.

Enrile, however, remained unconvinced and gave Corona until Wednesday to allow himself to be cross examined or his statement given in court on Tuesday will be stricken off the record.

"Pinayagan ko siyang magsalita nang mahaba. Wag niyo naman kaming babastusin," Enrile said. "I will not allow any abuse of authority against this court for as long as I am presiding officer."