U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg, New Jersey’s 86-year-old senior senator, was diagnosed with treatable cancer in the stomach in the last 24 hours and will begin chemotherapy today.
The Democrat still plans to finish out his current term – his fifth in the Senate – and seek re-election in 2014.
“This doesn’t change any of that,” Lautenberg’s chief aide, Dan Katz, said of the senator’s political plans. “After he receives his treatment, back to normal.”
Moments ago, Lautenberg’s office issued a statement from the senator’s oncologist, James F. Holland, saying:
“We expect a full and complete recovery for Senator Lautenberg. The senator will be treated with chemotherapy administered approximately every three weeks. We anticipate that he will receive between six and eight treatments, and in between treatments, the senator is expected to be back at work in the Senate.”
Lautenberg took ill Monday while at home in Cliffside Park. He fell down and phoned his doctor and an ambulance. The senator directed the ambulance to transport him to Manhattan for treatment at Mount Sinai Medical Center, where he has been hospitalized ever since. Lautenberg never lost consciousness, his aides said.
Best wishes to him and his family.