Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner Diagnosed With Cancer

Illustration for article titled Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner Diagnosed With Cancer

Just two months after her re-election to a second term, Argentina's popular president, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, 58, has thyroid cancer. With early detection and treatment, the survival rate is high, and Kirchner's prognosis is good; the cancer hasn't metastasized or spread to her lymph nodes. She plans to step away for about three weeks starting next week. Her husband, former Argentine president Nestor Kirchner, passed away last year after a heart attack.

And, if you're a student of international politics and/or cancer diagnoses, the BBC offers a helpful rundown of all the Latin American leaders who have been diagnosed with cancer in the past few years: Venzuela's Hugo Chavez, Fernando Lugo of Paraguay, former Brazilian president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, and current Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff.

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The needle biopsy was more painful than the surgery (the most painful part of the surgery was the ridiculously uncomfortable hospital bed and pillow that I had to lay on for 20 hours or so without being able to turn over because of the tubes sticking out of my neck). The radioactive iodine pill was more uncomfortable than the biopsy. They seriously just gloss over that part. Oh yeah, stay away from babies, don't hug anyone for a week or so, but no one told me I'd feel more miserably ill for a good three days then I'd ever been in my life. It felt like my stomach was filled with concrete and all I could do was crouch in the corner holding my knees. I mean, it only lasted for a couple of days, I'm sure regular, prolonged chemo is all of that and then some, but still. "Easy cancer" is a big pain in the butt (I should probably say "pain in the neck"). And they want to do that to me again in a couple of months just to make sure it's gone, even though there's just but a tiny little chance that it'll be back or that it'll spread? Fuck no! I'll let you know if I feel any new lumps growing, till then you keep those creepy lead canisters away from me!

And will we ever be able to balance my hormones? And will my doctor understand that even though my levels test as "normal" doesn't mean I'm not still zombie drowsy? And how will I pay for my necessarily not generic medication if I can't find a job with benefits? I will lose my medicaid coverage if I make more than $500 a month, so there's no middle ground between living with my parents and working very part time, and finding myself a full time job with benefits.

But, hey! I'm still alive, and other than missing one of my vital organs, and never having quite enough energy to complete anything, and being uncomfortably dependent on the pharmaceutical industry, I'm super duper healthy!