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Philippine lady senator diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer

Publication Date : 02-07-2014


Philippines–Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago disclosed on Wednesday that she was suffering from lung cancer.

“Ladies and gentlemen, allow me introduce myself to you as the only senator who has been diagnosed with lung cancer,” Santiago said at a press conference she held at the Senate.

“I have come so you can see me personally before cancer ravages my body,” said the former trial court judge.

Santiago, 69, said she was diagnosed with stage four cancer of the left lung last week, but said it was not spreading.

She said her condition made “it hard for me to breathe.”

“I don’t know what the reactions of my enemies are. Maybe they will be happy because on one hand I might die and then they could get rid of me. But on the other hand I might survive and then I will get rid of them,” the feisty senator said.

Asked how she felt about it, Santiago said: “I was very excited. I’m not kidding.”

“Yes! I got cancer!” she exclaimed.

Santiago said she would receive chemotherapy treatment.

“I hope to see you in six weeks recovered, after going through treatment,” she said.

Santiago has also been fighting  chronic fatigue syndrome, forcing her to regularly take an extended  medical leave at the Senate.

“Every time I was checked for chronic fatigue syndrome, I would get a CT scan but they couldn’t see it (cancer) because my lungs were already filled with fluid and it just appeared as a small blur on the scan,” Santiago said.

Early last month, Santiago stepped down as judge of the International Criminal Court, citing her precarious health condition.


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