Fayetteville Mayor Lioneld Jordan will take a break from his daily duties at city hall to deal with a medical issue that may require surgery.
Doctors recently discovered blockage of an artery in Jordan’s neck which supplies oxygenated blood to the brain and that he may need to undergo surgery as early as Tuesday or Wednesday, said Communication Director Lindsley Smith.
The issue was first noticed on Oct. 16 when Jordan lost normal vision for about five minutes during a proclamation reading at the University of Arkansas.
He was taken to the hospital where he was tested for lateral rectus palsy, a nerve disorder that causes double vision. Jordan was released the same day and was told to take off work for a couple of days.
Jordan wore an eye patch at Tuesday night’s City Council meeting to help relieve his vision problems, but had removed it by Wednesday at the Frisco Trail ribbon cutting ceremony where he told us he was doing “much better.”
Test results later revealed the problem was actually carotid artery blockage.
Like the arteries that supply blood to the heart – the coronary arteries – the carotid arteries can also develop atherosclerosis or “hardening of the arteries” on the inside of the vessels. Over time, the buildup of fatty substances and cholesterol narrows the carotid arteries. This decreases blood flow to the brain and increases the risk of a stroke. Over time, the buildup of fatty substances and cholesterol narrows the carotid arteries. This decreases blood flow to the brain and increases the risk of a stroke.
Smith said Jordan has an appointment Tuesday morning with a surgeon to determine if surgery is required.
“This is a procedure that is done – I won’t say regularly – but it’s not a typically uncommon procedure, Chief of Staff Don Marr said during Monday night’s Town Hall Meeting. “We hope all indications are that once this is complete and he is treated, he’ll be back on the job fully.”
Ward 4 City Council member Shirley Lucas presided over Monday night’s Town Hall Meeting in Jordan’s absence.
Alderwoman Brenda Thiel, who also serves as vice mayor, will assume Jordan’s role during Tuesday afternoon’s council agenda session.