Mrs Merkel said at the end of the Group of 20 summit in
The 64-year-old appeared unsteady and was seen shaking at a ceremony in
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said she understands reporters’ questions surrounding her health after two incidents this month in which she was seen shaking at public events, but insisted: ‘I’m fine.’
The health scare came just hours before she was due to board the plane for Japan, sparking new questions about her health.
A German government spokesman said Merkel would not cancel any appointments in the next two days – saying ‘The chancellor is well.’
Merkel’s spokesman Steffen Seibert later tweeted she was on the way to Osaka for the G20 summit, and that ‘numerous bilateral talks with other leaders are planned’.
The 64-year-old chancellor’s arms and body could be seen noticeably trembling as she met Germany’s President Frank-Walter Steinmeier.
For around two minutes, she continually folded her arms in an apparent attempt to stop her hands and body from violently juddering.
Close-up footage showed the difficulty she was having trying to keep the quivering under control as she gripped her arms together.
Chancellor Angela Merkel was seen shaking as she met President Frank-Walter Steinmeier in Berlin
The German Chancellor was seen folding her arms as she attempted to contain the juddering motion
And last week, her whole body shook as she stood outside in hot weather alongside Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky.
Mrs Merkel said afterwards that she was fine after drinking three glasses of water, which she ‘apparently needed’.
Today, the German chancellor was pictured at the G20 summit in Osaka speaking with French president Emmanuel Macron.
And she also greeted Turkish president Recep Tayipp Erdogan.
What was causing Angela Merkel to shake?
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has been seen shaking twice in two weeks.
Two weeks ago, she blamed dehydration for her trembling as she stood in the sun in Berlin next to Ukraine’s new president Volodymyr Zelensky.
And last week, her spokesman claimed she was ‘fine’ after footage showed her shaking while standing next to president Frank-Walter Steinmeier.
An over-active thyroid?
Dr Sarah Brewer, a GP and medical director of Healthspan, told MailOnline Merkel’s shaking could be caused by having an over-active thyroid.
The condition is 10 times more likely to strike women than men, according to the NHS.
Side effect of medication?
Dr Brewer added that shaking could be a side effect of some medication.
The US National Library of Medicine lists 17 different drugs that can cause the shakes, including caffeine, antibiotics, antidepressants, alcohol or nicotine.
Experts are divided over the suspected cause of Angela Merkel’s mysterious shakes. One said the jolts were ‘not a sign’ of Parkinson’s, which is often associated with tremors (stock)
Low blood sugar?
Shaking, which is uncontrollable, can also be a sign of low blood sugar – a serious complication often seen in diabetic patients.
The shakes can also be caused by a fever, fear, stress or a medical condition called essential tremor.
The neurological disease strikes up to four per cent of people over the age of 40 in the UK, data suggests. It is unclear how common it is in Germany.
After watching the footage of Merkel shaking the first time, Peter Garrard, a professor at St George’s, University of London, said her symptoms ‘seem to fit with a diagnosis of orthostatic tremor’ – a rare neurological condition.
When asked again today, he told MailOnline: ‘I still think it’s orthostatic tremor.’
The disorder, previously referred to as Shaky Legs Syndrome – according to
Patients often suffer with tremors in one or more parts of their body, which is often worse when they stand.
The progressive disorder generally causes ‘shaky’ or ‘frozen’ legs, which usually disappear when the patient sits, walks or lies down.
Stress can make the shakes worse, which then becomes a vicious cycle as tremors cause the patient to become increasingly uneasy.
Or the tremors, which can last just a few seconds, can come on for no apparent reason.
Over time, the condition can cause fatigue, pain and immobility. There is no cure but drugs like Clonazepam can ease the symptoms.
Walking aids like scooters, sticks or even wheelchairs in extreme cases, may eventually be required.
Dr Mike Fitzpatrick, a GP, told
This helps to raise the body’s temperature to ‘kill’ an invading bacteria or virus.
‘Rigors tend to last a few minutes and then once the heat is generated, you’d be right back to normal,’ he said.
However, Dr Philippa Kaye, a London-based GP, told MailOnline that she would hope any infection Merkel may have had ‘would have been treated by now’.
What experts say definitely aren’t causing Merkel to shake
Parkinson’s – Ley Sander, a professor of neurology at University College London told MailOnline the shakes Mrs Merkel had was definitely ‘not a sign’ of Parkinson’s – a condition often associated with tremors.
Dehydration – Dr Paul Jarman, a consultant neurologist at University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, told MailOnline: ‘What I can say for sure is that it was not due to dehydration.’ The NHS does not list shivering as a known symptom of dehydration – when the body loses more fluid than it takes in.