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Ivey to begin cancer treatment after spot found on lung

By MARY SELL, Alabama Daily News

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey said Thursday she will begin treatment for cancer after an “isolated malignancy” was found on her lung. 

“(Friday) morning, I will travel to UAB for an outpatient procedure, which will allow me to soon begin a series of specialized radiation treatments,” Ivey, 74, said in a written release. “None of this will prevent me from continuing to serve as your governor and doing the work you elected me to do.“

Ivey said that during a routine exam, her longtime physician discovered an unusual spot on her lung.

“Additional tests confirmed that this was, indeed, a tiny, isolated malignancy,” she said. 

“The good news is I am one of the fortunate ones where this was discovered early, and it is very treatable.”

“Naturally, I welcome your prayers and your support,” Ivey said. “Just as so many others who have been affected by cancer, I am confident of God’s plan and purpose for my life and feel extremely fortunate this was caught so early.” 

Dr. William Saliski of Montgomery Pulmonary Consultants said Ivey was referred to him and a biopsy was performed on her lung.

“Upon consultation with our cancer team and reviewing all options available, Gov. Ivey determined that these minimal radiation treatments are her preference,” Saliski said in a statement. “Gov. Ivey has opted for the least invasive treatment which has an excellent cure rate.  I expect her to make a full recovery.”

Several state leaders took to social media to share thoughts of support for Ivey.

“Throughout her treatment, Gov. Ivey will carry with her the prayers, thoughts, and well-wishes of millions of Alabamians, and those of my family and I will certainly be among them.” Lt. Gov. Will Ainsworth said on Twitter.

Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh, R-Anniston, asked his Twitter followers to join him in praying for Ivey’s speedy recovery. 

“Her leadership is unparalleled and I look forward to continuing to work with her for the people of Alabama,” Marsh said.

Other governors have worked through health issues. In early 2017 then-Gov. Robert Bentley was briefly hospitalized a heart arrhythmia. Doctors performed a cardiac procedure to bring his heartbeat back to normal rhythm.

Bentley stepped down a month later amid a scandal involving his relationship with a female staff member and Ivey became governor. She was elected to a full term last year.

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