Mitt Romney treated for prostate cancer over the summer; prognosis is good

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SALT LAKE CITY - Former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney was treated for prostate cancer over the summer, a source close to Romney told CNN Monday.

"Last year, Governor Mitt Romney was diagnosed with slow-growing prostate cancer…The cancer was removed surgically and found not to have spread beyond the prostate,”  a Romney aid told Fox 13 News.

Romney’s prognosis is reported to be good.  According to Dr. Jonathan Tward from the Huntsman cancer institute, prostate cancer is diagnosed in one in seven men, and 170,000 new diagnosis are made each year in the United States.

“Unlike a lot of other cancers, prostate cancer is a very manageable disease.  The cure rate is very high,” said Dr. Tward.

Treatment options can include active monitoring, surgery and radiation.

“Even if prostate cancer isn’t cured you can still live a very very long time.  So the risk of dying of prostate cancer within ten years of the diagnosis is extremely low,” said Dr. Tward.

Romney, the 70-year-old former governor of Massachusetts, is being widely encouraged to run for Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch's seat in 2018. Hatch announced last week he would retire from the Senate.

Romney spoke to President Donald Trump over the phone Thursday, a White House official confirmed to CNN. Details of their conversation have not been released.

News of his health scare may actually be an indicator of his intent to run for Hatch’s senate seat.

“The really important thing, this is a sign that maybe he’s trying to control political stories and he’s doing a good job of it,” said Jason Perry, Director of the Hinkley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah.  Perry expects Romney to make an announcement soon.

“I think he’s going to come out probably sometime next week or so with his decision about what to do with the campaign,” said Perry.

Romney himself has yet to make any statements about his health or his intent to run.

For more information on prostate cancer, the symptoms and the treatments, visit: https://healthcare.utah.edu/huntsmancancerinstitute/cancer-information/cancer-types-and-topics/prostate-cancer.php