Tuesday, May 20, 2008


Senator Ted Kennedy, D-MA, was diagnosed with a brain tumor at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. He was transported there this weekend after having had a seizure while he was at home in Hyannisport.

More accurately, he was diagnosed with a glioma, which is a particularly aggressive form of malignant brain tumor. The prognosis is not good with any of these types of tumors, either. His was found in the left parietal lobe of the brain - sort of on the left side of the top. Down the road he's going to be dealing with a number of things that will eventually be affected, including his ability to speak and process speech that he hears, his ability to walk, and ultimately the function of the left side of his body. His family will also be affected as they will be the ones left to care for him as he diminishes.

His tumor is inoperable. The only real treatment options for him are radiation and chemotherapy. I've seen what they can do - my father had a number of radiation treatments done on him to treat inoperable lung cancer. It was not pretty; as he was losing weight anyway, one of the things I remember him telling me is that he lost his sense of taste. I remember him saying everything tasted like iron.

For what Senator Kennedy is in for, this will turn out to be a nasty way to have to manage this disease process. As much as I am not fond of the senator, he after all is a human being - I bet he puts his trousers on in the morning the same way that I do - and I will keep him and his family in my thoughts and prayers.

No comments: