Democratic presidential hopeful Sanders says he was 'dumb' to ignore health warnings

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders said on Tuesday he had wrongly ignored warning signs about his health before suffering a heart attack last week, but that he did not think the scare would damage his campaign for president.

Sanders, one of 19 Democrats competing to take on Republican President Donald Trump in the November 2020 election, suffered chest pains on Oct. 1 while in Nevada for a campaign stop and abruptly canceled campaign events.

Outside his home in Burlington, Vermont, where he was recovering on Tuesday, the candidate told reporters he was “feeling good, getting some work done” after what his campaign later said was a myocardial infarction, a medical term for a heart attack.

“I don’t think it helps or hurts,” Sanders, 78, said of the health scare, adding that he was on his way to see a new cardiologist in Burlington.

“I must confess that I was dumb,” he said, explaining that he had been campaigning hard in the early voting states of Iowa and New Hampshire before the incident.

“And yet I, in the last month or two, just was more fatigued than I usually have been and I should have listened to those symptoms,” Sanders said.

Reporting by Simon Lewis; Editing by Bill Berkrot