In high school he broke his wrist and his ankle, both while stupidly playing around. (He fell off a railroad boxcar and a stage.) He also had his appendix removed in high school and still has a six-inch abdominal scar from the procedure.
In his third year of teaching he was rushed to the emergency room after having symptoms that appeared to be a heart attack. His heart was determined to be fine, and the symptoms were diagnosed as peritoneal tachycardia--pain due to an inflammation of the lining of the sac in which the heart rests. Fortunately, the symptoms have only recurred since then when he undergoes stress at high altitude (such as hiking in the mountains).
A few years after he began teaching he was hospitalized again for ear surgery that was a result of chronic infections that lasted for more than ten years, starting when he took a swimming class in college. He now has a reconstructed eardrum in his left ear. That causes a significant, but manageable hearing loss.
Since he quit chewing tobacco in the mid '90s, Mr. Burrow has had very few medical problems. In fact, for more than twenty years he saw the doctor only for basic check-ups. His main ongoing health problem is hypertension, a common problem on his mother's side of the family. With daily medication, his blood pressure is kept under good control.
In 2019 Mr. Burrow was again hospitalized. This time he had a severe diabetic reaction that left him severely dehydrated and sent his blood sugar reading to 980 (which the doctor said was the highest level he'd seen on someone who wasn't in a coma). The blood sugar is now under control, but he will continue to deal with diabetes for the rest of his life.
David Burrow, after surgery to reconstruct his eardrum
A mostly healthy David Burrow standing by the superintendent's office at Bishop Garrigan High School
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