Good News for Former President Jimmy Carter

[Content Note: Cancer.]

Former President Jimmy Carter announced yesterday that his cancer treatment has been very successful:
Carter said in a statement that his most recent MRI brain scan did not reveal any signs of the original cancer spots or any new ones and that he'll continue his treatment.

Carter, 91, initially made the announcement near the beginning of the Sunday School class he was teaching at Maranatha Baptist Church in Plains, a close friend and fellow church member said.

"He said he got a scan this week and the cancer was gone," Jill Stuckey said by phone from Maranatha, where Carter was still in the midst of teaching to about 350 people, many of them visitors. "The church, everybody here, just erupted in applause."

...[O]ne expert who is not involved in the former president's treatment cautioned that this latest bit of good news doesn't mean he is cured or is totally cancer-free.

"It doesn't mean that there is no cancer in his body; it means that there is no indication that they can find cancer for the present," said Dr. Len Lichtenfeld, deputy chief medical officer for the Atlanta-based American Cancer Society, who stressed he was speaking about cancer in general.

While the scans of Carter's brain and liver show no signs of the disease, cancerous cells could still be in his bloodstream, said Lichtenfeld. Still, he said, the news is encouraging for Carter.

"The President has done exceptionally well. There are still many patients with melanoma who don't have this outcome," said Lichtenfeld. "He's in the best possible place."
Carter is going to continue his treatment, in the hope of staying in that best possible place as long as possible.

I'm happy for former President Carter and his family and friends! I'm glad he has access to such great medical care, and I'm grateful that he is one of our statespeople who advocates that everyone should have the same access to great medical care that he has.

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