John McCain has been diagnosed with a primary glioblastoma. He had an aggressive tumor removed last week. News of this diagnosis is just hitting news outlets. CNN is reporting that the tumor, which was removed last Friday, is the same type of cancer that Ted Kennedy had.
[Scroll Down for Video]
McCain, 80, had surgery to remove a blood clot Friday at the Phoenix Mayo Clinic Hospital. What was supposed to be a minor surgery quickly became more intense after tests revealed that the blood clot was due to the glioblastoma.
The surgery reportedly lasted four hours. An incision was made above his eyebrow, where a portion of bone was removed. Subsequent scans are positive, leading doctors to believe the cancerous mass has been removed.
McCain’s doctors spoke with CNN’s Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta. Though the surgery removed the tumor, the cancer will still require treatment. McCain’s medical team is exploring options now, and he will likely undergo radiation and chemotherapy.
— Meghan McCain (@MeghanMcCain) July 20, 2017
“The news of my father’s illness has affected every one of us in the McCain Family,” tweeted Meghan McCain on Wednesday. “It won’t surprise you to learn that in all this, the one of us who is most confident and calm is my father.”
The blood clot which alerted doctors to the presence of cancer was reportedly found during a routine exam. McCain has a history of skin cancer, and so receives regular checkups.
McCain, who has a history of being resilient, had not complained of any pain before the blood clot was discovered. Doctors also said that his neurological testing showed no impairment in cognition.
His doctors told CNN that McCain had felt “fatigued,” and “foggy and not as sharp.” He was also seeing double at times. He had a CT scan, and left the exam. After the results came in later that day, he was called back to the hospital for an MRI. By late afternoon, he was having surgery.
When he regained consciousness, CNN writes, “he knew what year it was and started cracking jokes. He also made it clear that he wanted to leave the hospital and get back to work.”
This isn’t the only reason McCain’s been in the news this week. McCain has been pressing hard for bipartisan work on the replacement for Obama-Care. And perhaps his absence from Washington and fortuitous use of a routine screening will highlight the importance of quality healthcare and preventative measures.
As for his prognosis, the future is uncertain. The average survival rate, Gupta notes, is 14 months from the point of diagnosis.