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Friday, April 17, 2015

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Battles Cancer

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, announced Tuesday morning that he has cancer.  He made the public disclosure nearly a year after being diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia.
He was diagnosed with CML in December 2008 and is currently being treated with a medicine that targets the abnormal protein that causes his leukemia. 
“Having lost one of my closest friends to a different, highly aggressive form of leukemia, I knew how serious my diagnosis was,” said Abdul-Jabbar, 62. “My own life expectancy became a question mark.”
Abdul-Jabbar, the NBA’s all-time leading scorer, won five championships with the Los Angeles Lakers before retiring in 1989.  He is currently is a coach with the Lakers, and is expected to live a full, active life, with medication.
Abdul-Jabbar, a father of five, said he wanted to talk about the disease after learning many patients don’t regularly take their medication and skip appointments to the doctor.
“I’m telling my story to encourage fellow patients to take charge of their health,” he said. “Work closely with your doctor, monitor your disease and, above all, take your medicine.”
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