Alderman Bob Fioretti hosted a South Loop Town Hall last night and shared more than plans for new lighting, street paving, sewer lines, job fairs, clean and greens, senior citizen days, empty lot blight, park landscapes, new stores, new schools and crime prevention. He also told his constituents details about the tonsil cancer he has endured--and from which he says he is recovering.
He pulled no punches. The treatment was extremely painful and he asked the doctor to take it slower. (He didn't.) He still has pain from the treatment, as well as the feeding tube he had to use until very recently. He lost a lot of weight and had to buy new suits. He must sip water continuously. He gets very tired. But he is on the mend. And he expects to fully recover.
He also shared something totally new. I had never heard of it before. He said that the cancer that struck him is caused by a virus. The human papilloma virus--which is exactly the same spreadable virus that causes cervical cancer in women
. And for which in young women, at least, there is now a vaccine
. The virus is spread through means as innocuous as drinking from the same glass. He said there was a big write-up about this type of cancer in May in the Wall Street Journal.
He explained that the type of cancer he contracted mostly strikes men between the ages of 40 and 55. Although it sometimes strikes younger and sometimes older. I asked him how he thought he got the virus to begin with.
He was honest. And wry. "I've spent a lot of time thinking about that," he said. "I have been going back through the years, 15 years at least and thinking, who was I kissing back then?"
For a complete explanation about this type of cancer, click here
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