(RxWiki News) After a rigorous battle, Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez has died of cancer. He was 58. Chavez recently returned from Cuba, where he received the fourth and final surgery for cancer described imprecisely as “pelvic cancer.”
Since being diagnosed in June 2011, Chavez had all the standards of care for what was obviously a very aggressive cancer. In addition to the surgeries, he underwent both chemotherapy and radiation.
The details of his treatment are as secret as the nature of the disease that took the rising socialist star.
One medical professional thinks the fact that he had undergone so many surgeries suggests that it wasn’t a solid tumor on an organ in the pelvis - prostate, bladder, colorectal, testicular or kidney.
Kent Sepkowitz, an infectious disease specialist in New York City, wrote in the Daily Beast that Chavez may have had a sarcoma, a soft-tissue cancer that “arises from the parts of us—muscle, blood vessels, lining of joints, cartilage, etc.—that hold us together.”
The world learned that Chavez’s cancer had reappeared on December 8 when he announced his decision to go to Cuba for treatment.
The politician had refused treatment in the United States or in Europe and instead was treated in Cuba.
Following the surgery, Chavez developed severe respiratory problems.
Chavez was handily re-elected to his fourth term as President of Venezuela in October 2012.
However, his illness created a power vacuum in Venezuela, which was finally resolved with the swearing in of his Vice President - Nicolas Maduro, who announced Chavez's death.
Chavez returned to Venezuela several weeks ago, and his condition worsened.