Martina Navratilova has announced that she has been diagnosed with two forms of cancer after discovering a swollen lymph node in her neck in November. The nine-time Wimbledon champion was previously given the all-clear from breast cancer 13 years ago after undergoing a course of radiation treatment, but has since been diagnosed with the disease once again in addition to having cancer in her throat.
“This double whammy is serious but still fixable,” said Navratilova. “I’m hoping for a favourable outcome. It’s going to stink for a while but I’ll fight with all I have got.”
The 66-year-old will not travel to this month’s Australian Open, where she was intending to work as a TV pundit, in light of her recent diagnosis but a statement from her representative described the prognosis as ‘good’.
A statement read: “Martina Navratilova has been diagnosed with stage one throat cancer. The prognosis is good and Martina will start her treatment this month. The cancer type is HPV and this particular type responds really well to treatment.
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“Martina noticed an enlarged lymph node in her neck during the WTA finals in Fort Worth. When it didn’t go down, a biopsy was performed, the results came back as stage one throat cancer. At the same time as Martina was undergoing the tests for the throat, a suspicious form was found in her breast, which was subsequently diagnosed as cancer, completely unrelated to the throat cancer.
“Both these cancers are in their early stages with great outcomes. Martina won’t be covering the Australian Open for Tennis Channel from their studio but hopes to be able to join in from time to time by Zoom.”
Navratilova registered nine Wimbledon singles triumphs between 1978 and 1990 in a career that spanned 32 years and saw her pick up 18 total Grand Slam titles. She has emerged as a prominent commentator and analyst in the years since her eventual retirement and has often been seen covering Wimbledon at the All England Club for the BBC.
The Czech-American was previously diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010 but eventually managed to fight off the disease after a six-month period of treatment and rehabilitation. She underwent surgery and radiation therapy in an attempt to get rid of the cancer, which proved successful after less than a year, although she is now facing a new battle to recover from the condition following her latest setback.
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