Wyoming Senator Craig Thomas Has Leukemia

Sad news:

Sen. Craig Thomas, hospitalized since Monday with pneumonia, has been diagnosed with a form of leukemia, the Republican senator’s spokesman said Thursday. Thomas fell ill in church in Casper on Sunday and was taken by ambulance to Wyoming Medical Center. He and his wife, Susan, flew back to Washington later in the day.

Thomas, 73, canceled campaign events Monday and was admitted to the National Naval Medical Center that evening, said his spokesman Cameron Hardy.

From his official website:

U.S. Senator Craig Thomas today announced that he has been diagnosed this week with a form of leukemia. Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) is a cancer of the blood and bone marrow. AML is the most common type of leukemia. More than 16,500 new cases occur in the United States each year.

Thomas had experienced energy losses over the last few weeks and was diagnosed with pneumonia Sunday. Further tests Sunday indicated low white cell levels, explaining the pneumonia but not the source of the blood cell anomaly. In preparation of Monday votes and party leadership elections on Nov. 15, Thomas flew to Washington DC to pursue further blood testing this week.

More on ALS at Wikipedia.

AML is treatable, although it’s a grueling regimen, especially for a 73-year-old. Should he decide to resign to undergo treatment, Wyoming’s governor, Dave Freudenthal, would appoint a replacement to fill out the period until the November 2008 elections. He’s a Democrat; Thomas is a Republican.

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James Joyner
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