Gov. Larry Hogan announced Monday afternoon he has been diagnosed with B-cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and that he will soon undergo a rigorous chemotherapy treatment.
The governor said he expects to fight and beat the disease and his doctors have told him it responds “aggressively” to chemotherapy.
Hogan, 59, said the cancer was “very advanced and very aggressive.” Right now, he said “it’s very advanced stage 3, if not stage 4” and that he’ll likely know for sure later this week.
He was surrounded by his family during a press conference at the Statehouse as he delivered blunt remarks about his prospects in battling the disease Monday.
“I won’t stop working to make Maryland better,” Hogan said. “I’ll be making the decisions the people elected me to make. I’m just like the more than 70,000 people diagnosed with lymphoma every single year who fight it, beat it and continue to do their jobs at the same time.”
The governor said he expects to begin rigorous 24-hour chemotherapy treatments soon. That process will last four days, according to Hogan. He said the entire chemotherapy process is expected to take about 18 weeks.
“As I understand it, they try to give you as much as you can possibly take without killing you,” Hogan said. “They want to kill the cancer and keep you alive.
“All the experts tell me I’ll come out of that completely clear. They also tell me it’s going to beat the hell out of me. Honestly, they tell you you’re going to go through hell and back again, but you’re going to love it when you get back and the results are going to be good,” Hogan said.
He plans to remain as governor, with Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford playing a larger day-to-day role as Hogan receives treatment.
Hogan said he first discovered a lump in his throat while shaving on the day before he left for a 12-day Asia trip that ended earlier this month. When he returned to the states he saw his primary care physician about the lump, who had him visit a specialist. After a series of catscans and MRIs, Hogan said doctors told him they found 12 lumps in his neck and chest and 20 to 40 more in his core and groin area.
“I took one test after another,” Hogan said. “It was like peeling an onion,” with each test finding more signs of cancer.
Hogan said he’s not currently experiencing any symptoms, besides a loss of appetite.
The Republican governor even joked that his odds of beating the cancer are better than his chances were of beating Democrat Anthony Brown in the 2014 election.