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Yuvraj's cancer curable, he will be back in 10 weeks: doctors

Express news service

Posted: Apr 06, 2012 at 1122 hrs IST

New Delhi: Doctors who treated cricketer Yuvraj Singh in Delhi said Monday that the southpaw would be able to resume full training in 10 weeks.

Doctors also said Yuvraj's cancer, seminoma, is completely curable with minimum chances of a relapse. They, however, did not rule out a relapse.

They said Yuvraj was responding well to the chemotherapy in the US, and marvelled at his "tremendous courage".

The 30-year-old left-hander has been in US since last month being treated for what was earlier claimed to be a tumour in the lungs by his family.

But it was later diagnosed as malignant for which Yuvraj is currently undergoing chemotherapy in the Cancer Research Institute in Boston.

Doctors said he was not suffering from lung cancer, saying the malignant tumour was located in the space between the lungs and not inside.

Yuvraj has been diagnosed with extragonadal seminoma, a rare tumour in the mediastinum, the space between the two lungs and above the heart, said Dr Nikesh Rohtagi, oncologist with Max HealthCare Saket, who is heading the India team of doctors looking into his case.

"He has a condition called extragonadal seminoma located between his two lungs rather than in his lungs. It is important to understand that this is not lung cancer nor has the tumor spread into lungs. Extragonadal seminoma is a rare tumour which forms less than one per cent of cancers in the whole," said the doctor. "The cure rate is 95 per cent," he added.

The mediastinum is the middle section of the chest cavity. It contains all of the chest organs except the lungs. Organs located in the mediastinum include the heart, the aorta, the thymus gland, the chest portion of the trachea, the esophagus, lymph nodes and important nerves.

Citing reasons for the occurrance of this rare cancer, he said, "This cancer is called seminoma as it is a cancer of the testis. But since in Yuvi's case it has started from the chest, such a condition is called extragonadal seminoma. It is generally found in young men."

Dr Rohtagi said chemotherapy is the best treatment for such cancers. In Yuvraj's case, the cure has been planned with the aim to ensure that he can return to full fitness and resume his cricketing career, he said.

"Hopefully he will be on the field by first week of May. Yuvraj should be able to start active training in about ten weeks."

Meanwhile, on February 8, Yuvraj will begin the third of his nine weeks of chemotherapy in the USA.

Dr Rohtagi said chemotherapy was the best treatment for such tumours as it completely erases the tumour in a short span of time.

In the first few days, Yuvraj did not feel very good, he felt nauseous but starting this week he will be hopefully on the mend, he said.

Doctors said Yuvraj has shown tremendous courage and has kept his spirits high all this while.

"...He has been reading; has read Lance Armstrong's books and is playing video games, going for long walks and sometimes jogging. He is committed to his therapy and recovery."

Lance Edward Armstrong, the former professional road racing cyclist, won the Tour de France a record seven consecutive times, having survived testicular cancer.

After being diagnosed with cancer in 1996, he went on to win the Tour de France each year from 1999 to 2005, and is the only person to win seven times, having broken the previous record of five wins.

Citing reasons for undergoing treatment at a hospital in USA, Dr Rohtagi said, "The USA based team has specially been chosen because of the vast experiences with sportsmen and they have had many positive outcomes.

Yuvraj Singh, who was Player of the Tournament in the World Cup last year with 362 runs, 15 wickets and four Man-of-the-Match awards, has also been taking ayurvedic medicines to battle the disease.

Earlier, Yuvraj's physiotherapist Dr Jatin Chaudhary told the reporters that the detection of cancer was delayed by wrong diagnosis by an Indian hospital.

Yuvraj has played 37 Tests, scoring 1775 runs at an average of 34.80.

He has 8051 runs at an average of 37.62 from his 274-match ODI career, the highlight of which was his stellar role in India's World Cup triumph last year.

In 23 Twenty20s, Yuvraj has scored 567 runs at 31.50.

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