Councilman: Mayor has fluid in his lungs

Mayor Frank Melton returned to the hospital over the weekend after complaining that fluid had built up in his lungs, making it difficult to breathe, Councilman Frank Bluntson said Tuesday.

Bluntson, along with Melton’s family physician, Dr. Robert Smith, drove the mayor to St. Dominic Hospital on Saturday.

“When the fluid builds up, he can’t hardly breathe, and he just needed some relief from that,” Bluntson said.

Goldia Revies, a city spokeswoman, said she did not know when Melton would leave the hospital, saying only that he would stay Tuesday night.

This is the third time the mayor has been hospitalized since November.

The city has not released an update on Melton’s condition.

Bluntson said he talked to Melton’s family members Monday, and they said he was resting comfortably. Revies said Melton’s wife, Ellen, had traveled from her home in Texas to be with the mayor.

Melton, 59, has suffered from health problems throughout his first term as mayor, requiring double-bypass surgery and the implanting of a defibrillator.

According to a court document released last week, Melton is in end-stage cardiomyopathy. His cardiologist has recommended a transplant, but Melton does not want one, the order says.

Clarion Ledger
1/7/9