Hirono to undergo cutting-edge treatment in cancer fight

Sen. Mazie Hirono to undergo cutting-edge treatment in cancer fight
Updated: Oct. 31, 2017 at 12:50 PM HST
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WASHINGTON D.C. (HawaiiNewsNow) - U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono says she'll undergo immunotherapy as part of her ongoing battle with cancer.

In an email message to supporters, Hirono said a recent scan "showed some small spots in my thyroid gland."

The Hawaii Democrat underwent surgery for advanced kidney cancer in May. A month later, she had surgery to remove a lesion from a rib.

Hirono described immunotherapy as a cutting-edge treatment "to enable my own immune system to recognize and attack cancer cells."

In a message on Twitter, she said the treatment would last three months.

She added, "This is different than chemotherapy, which suppresses the immune system. The most recent public person who has benefited from immunotherapy is President Jimmy Carter in his fight against melanoma. I expect to continue to do my job during the course of this treatment."

Hirono is running for re-election in 2018. And after her surgery, she's missed little time from work.

She closed the email with, "Having cancer sucks, but I know that there are people in our country facing major health issues every single day."

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