Former Uruguayan President José 'Pepe' Mujica Diagnosed with Esophageal Cancer

Former Uruguayan President José Mujica, 88, has been diagnosed with esophageal cancer and will undergo radiotherapy treatment. Mujica, who served as president from 2010 to 2015, remains committed to his activism despite the health challenge.

Mahnoor Jehangir
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Former Uruguayan President José 'Pepe' Mujica Diagnosed with Esophageal Cancer

Former Uruguayan President José 'Pepe' Mujica Diagnosed with Esophageal Cancer

José 'Pepe' Mujica, the former President ofUruguay, has been diagnosed with esophageal cancer, as announced by his personal physician, Dr. Raquel Pannone, on Monday, May 1st, 2024. The 88-year-old Mujica, who served as the country's president from 2010 to 2015, will undergo radiotherapy treatment to combat the malignant tumor found in his esophagus.

Why this matters: The health of a prominent political figure like Mujica can have significant implications for the country's political landscape and stability. Moreover, his diagnosis and treatment can raise awareness about esophageal cancer and its effects on the elderly population.

According to Dr. Pannone, the tumor is "not too extensive" and has not affected any other organs. "They do not have any injury to any other organ. This lesion is limited to the esophagus. Due to the type of physiology that this injury has, we were evaluating the treatment possibilities,"she explained. Mujica's age, immunological disease, and kidney failure make surgery and chemotherapy unsuitable options, leavingradiotherapyas the chosen treatment plan.

The radiotherapy treatment is set to begin immediately and is expected to last for a month and a half. Mujica will be treated at the Cor Clinic, owned by Álvaro Vázquez, son of former President Tabaré Vázquez. The medical team chose this clinic due to its agreement with the Casmu Sanatorium, where Mujica is currently being treated.

"Afraid of what? Of dying? Everything that is born, is born to die. You have to accept it. And I have been lucky: I have been kicked by bullets, I lost my step, I have an immunological disease. I'm living for free! What am I going to complain about! When it's my turn, it's my turn," he remarked during a press conference on Monday, surrounded by leaders, activists, and supporters of his Frente Amplio party.

Mujica's wife, Lucía Topolansky, has been a strong support system for him throughout this challenging time. Dr. Pannone highlighted their excellent companionship and the former president's openness about hishealth issues, even joking about having to follow a strict diet due to the diagnosis.

The news of Mujica's diagnosis has sparked concern and support from the Uruguayan government and people. President Luis Lacalle Pou telephoned Mujica at around 5 pm on Monday to offer his support and assistance. Mujica, a world-renowned political figure, has vowed to continue his activism despite the health challenge, demonstrating his unwavering commitment to his ideals and the Uruguayan people.

Key Takeaways

  • José "Pepe" Mujica, former President of Uruguay, diagnosed with esophageal cancer at 88.
  • Tumor is "not too extensive" and limited to esophagus, with radiotherapy as chosen treatment.
  • Mujica's age and health conditions make surgery and chemotherapy unsuitable.
  • Radiotherapy treatment to begin immediately and last for 1.5 months at Cor Clinic.
  • Mujica remains optimistic and committed to activism despite health challenge.