McCain diagnosed with brain cancer
WASHINGTON — Sen. John McCain of Arizona, the 2008 Republican presidential nominee with an independent streak, has been diagnosed with a brain tumor, his office said in a statement Wednesday.
The 80-year-old lawmaker has glioblastoma, a particularly aggressive type of brain tumor, according to doctors at the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, where McCain had a blood clot removed from above his left eye on Friday. The senator and his family are reviewing further treatment, including a combination of chemotherapy and radiation.
“Subsequent tissue pathology revealed that a primary brain tumor known as a glioblastoma was associated with the blood clot,” according to his office.
About 20,000 people in the U.S. each year are diagnosed with a glioblastoma. The American Cancer Society puts the five-year survival rate for patients over 55 at about 4 percent.
The tumor digs tentaclelike roots into normal brain tissue. Patients fare best when surgeons can cut out all the visible tumor, which happened with McCain’s tumor, according to his office. That isn’t a cure; cancerous cells that aren’t visible still tend to lurk, the reason McCain’s doctors are considering further treatment.