United States Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota revealed on Thursday that she was diagnosed with and successfully treated for Stage 1A breast cancer in early 2021.
“In February of this year, doctors at Mayo Clinic found small white spots called calcifications during a routine mammogram. After this was discovered, I had a biopsy at Piper Breast Center in Minneapolis, and then learned that I had Stage 1A breast cancer,” Klobuchar wrote in a Medium post. “After a number of other tests, I returned to Mayo and had a lumpectomy on the right breast which involved the removal of the cancer. In May, I completed a course of radiation treatment, and after additional follow-up visits, it was determined in August that the treatment went well.”
After praising the medical staff who potentially saved her life, Klobuchar stressed the importance of maintaining regular checkups while noting how difficult it is for many Americans to access the care that they need.
“I also want to call attention to the fact that many people have been delaying physicals and routine examinations because of the pandemic. I know that because I delayed mine. In fact, more than one in three adults reported delaying or forgoing health care because of coronavirus-related concerns. Studies have found that thousands of people who missed their mammogram due to the pandemic may be living with undetected breast cancer. Over and over, doctors are seeing patients who are being treated for more serious conditions that could have been caught earlier,” the 61-year-old lawmaker said.
“There is rarely a good time to go in for a mammogram or routine health screening. So many Americans are still juggling their children on their laps and their laptops on their desks. They are constantly balancing their families, their jobs, and their health. It’s easy to put off health screenings, just like I did. But I hope my experience is a reminder for everyone of the value of routine health checkups, exams, and follow-through. I am so fortunate to have caught the cancer at an early enough stage and to not need chemotherapy or other extensive treatments, which unfortunately is not the case for so many others,” she added.
“Like often happens with anyone dealing with illness, this experience gave me time to reflect on my own life and those I love. It also gave me renewed purpose to my work. I have immense gratitude for my family, friends, colleagues, and the people of Minnesota, and I know that each day is a gift,” Klobuchar concluded. “Thank you for your support.”
What's Your Reaction?
Brandon is a political writer for the Hill Reporter specializing in current events, breaking news, and scientific discovery. Brandon holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Indiana University. He lives in New York City.