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  • Twins' Terry Ryan battling treatable form of cancer

    The Twins have released a statement today from Terry Ryan who says that he will miss at least the beginning portion of spring training because of cancer that is considered treatable.

    Ryan will undergo treatment at the Mayo Clinic for Squamous Cell Carcinoma after a biopsy of a lump on his neck was determined to be cancerous. Dr. Vijay Eyunni told the media Monday afternoon that the cancer was sourced to his lymph nodes and not skin cancer as previously reported.

    Here is the entirety of Ryan's statement:

    As the Minnesota Twins prepare to open Spring Training in Fort Myers, FL, I felt it was important to take this opportunity to share information surrounding my personal health.

    During the course of a routine annual physical, Twins team physician Dr. Vijay Eyunni detected a lump in my neck which required further review. A subsequent biopsy confirmed the lump was cancerous, leading to an official medical diagnosis of Squamous Cell Carcinoma. Thankfully, incremental tests indicate the cancer appears to be confined to my neck and has not spread to other regions of my body.

    At the direction of Dr. Eyunni, I am currently being treated at the Mayo Clinic as well as Minnesota Oncology. Iíve been assured this form of cancer is treatable and remain optimistic about my return to good health in the near future.

    Understanding the need to focus on treatment and recovery, I will not be in Fort Myers as we commence Spring Training. That said, Iím highly confident in the proven leadership of our baseball operations team including Rob Antony, Mike Radcliff, Ron Gardenhire and others as we collectively prepare for the 2014 Major League season.

    Lastly, my family and I would like to say thank you to Dr. Eyunni as well as the doctors and medical staff at the Mayo Clinic and Minnesota Oncology. In addition, we are grateful for the many friends and colleagues who have sent their well wishes and support throughout this challenging time. Itís my intention to see you back at the ballpark as soon as possible.
    According to MLB.com's Rhett Bollinger, Ryan will undergo surgery tomorrow and the hopes are that a combination of surgery and radiation treatment will eliminate the cancer.

    All the best to Terry Ryan and his family.
    Comments 41 Comments
    1. SpiritofVodkaDave's Avatar
      SpiritofVodkaDave -
      Quote Originally Posted by goliath View Post
      Wow, why so snippy, I apologize for my comments if they bothered anyone. I'm a dermatologist and deal with squamous cell carcinoma of the skin everyday. I was just noting that it seemed like more than just a localized skin cancer to have Oncology and Mayo Clinic involved and have press release. I'll leave my commenting to my amatuer baseball knowledge.
      Believe me, I don't think Nick's comment (or mine) were directed towards you (since you know what you are talking about) it's the armchair Doctors who often come out of the woodworks.
    1. cmathewson's Avatar
      cmathewson -
      Get well soon, Terry.
    1. JB_Iowa's Avatar
      JB_Iowa -
    1. JB_Iowa's Avatar
      JB_Iowa -
    1. Nick Nelson's Avatar
      Nick Nelson -
      Quote Originally Posted by goliath View Post
      Wow, why so snippy, I apologize for my comments if they bothered anyone. I'm a dermatologist and deal with squamous cell carcinoma of the skin everyday. I was just noting that it seemed like more than just a localized skin cancer to have Oncology and Mayo Clinic involved and have press release. I'll leave my commenting to my amatuer baseball knowledge.
      Sorry, didn't mean to be snippy. We just want to be very careful about having people form medical conclusions based on a 4-paragraph press release, especially with a sensitive matter such as this.

      And yes, the comment wasn't really directed at you.
    1. JB_Iowa's Avatar
      JB_Iowa -
      Quote Originally Posted by goliath View Post
      Basal cell carcinomas are the mildest and most common form of skin cancers. Squamous cell carcinomas can be more aggresive and metastasis. It's unclear from the press release if the squamous cell carcinoma originated in the skin (they can also arise in mouth, throat, and other body areas lined by squamous cells like the chest, bladder, etc). It says lump in the neck. It may have been a lymph node. So, he may be getting further work up from Oncology for the primary lesion (they imply it is localized-confined to the neck) and possible need for further treatment like radiation and/or chemotherapy.
      I wish him a full speedy recovery.
      Based on Bollinger's tweets, it looks like your interpretive comments were right on. I just wish I had known you were a dermatologist when I first read them.

      Thanks for the info.
    1. Riverbrian's Avatar
      Riverbrian -
      Sincere Best Wishes to the GM of my baseball Team. I'm Hoping someone is looking out for Terry Ryan in whatever lies ahead.
    1. goliath's Avatar
      goliath -
      That's fine, if you've read my other comments in the past, you know I don't have anything intelligent to contribute, so it was an opportunity to give some insight.
      Anyway, we all wish Mr. Ryan the best.
    1. SpiritofVodkaDave's Avatar
      SpiritofVodkaDave -
      Quote Originally Posted by goliath View Post
      That's fine, if you've read my other comments in the past, you know I don't have anything intelligent to contribute, so it was an opportunity to give some insight.
      Anyway, we all wish Mr. Ryan the best.
      Yeah, apologies again. Wasn't directed at you at all. Things have just gone off the rails in the past when health is involved and everyone seems to become a doctor(thus drowning out the real doctors like you who can contribute quality posts)
    1. JB_Iowa's Avatar
      JB_Iowa -
    1. Jerr's Avatar
      Jerr -
      Praying for a swift return to his job of turning this team around. Best of luck Mr. Ryan
    1. gil4's Avatar
      gil4 -
      Quote Originally Posted by strumdatjag View Post
      Many of us have had similar skin cancer problems and are capable of providing a better diagnosis than the guys who gave us "bilateral leg weakness".
      But what if it really was "bilateral leg weakness". Would the amateurs have ever come up with that?
    1. ashburyjohn's Avatar
      ashburyjohn -
      The press release sounds optimistic in its prognosis and I will hope for even better than that.
    1. Halsey Hall's Avatar
      Halsey Hall -
      Good luck to Terry and hoping to see him down here later this spring.
    1. glunn's Avatar
      glunn -
      I am glad to see the support for Terry Ryan's recovery, and share in the hope for his speedy recovery.
    1. eLee612's Avatar
      eLee612 -
      Prayers for a quick recovery sent your way, TR! Pretty sure MLB Network and some Twins fleece were part of Dr. Eyunni's prescription. Where can I send it?

    1. skiumah21's Avatar
      skiumah21 -
      Just weighing in as a medical oncologist. Based on the report in likely represents Squamous Cell Cancer of the Head/Neck, not skin cancer. It can present in neck lymph nodes, later being found on tonsils, larynx, or base of tongue as primary site. Given the plan for surgery followed by radiation, there may be some high risk features to the cancer (i.e. extracapsular extension, LN>6 cm) that require adjuvant radiation although that will be known once the surgery is complete. It is highly treatable, but if radiation included will keep him detained in treatment for approx 10 weeks from surgery to radiation complete.
    1. Don't Feed the Greed Guy's Avatar
      Don't Feed the Greed Guy -
      Just a positive note about expert and "armchair" doctors... This is a developing story and a developing thread. Both are occurring simultaneously. As this story unfolds, it offers all of us an opportunity to learn about various forms of cancer.

      Some may post from a position of ignorance. I would say that is far better than silence. It give us all an opportunity to learn, be better informed, and vigilant against cancer. When we are sitting at our office cubicle, or when we are taking a shower, or putting sunscreen on ourselves or someone else later this summer, and we discover something unusual, we might begin to know what to do. Thanks to our dermatologist friend for chiming in, by the way. That's a fitting example of what I'm trying to explain.

      There has been another thread on this site concerned about over moderation. My take is that Terry Ryan's unfortunate diagnosis offers all of us another opportunity to learn, grow, be vigilant against cancer, and give each other a break.

      The game of baseball has brought us into Terry Ryan's world. Now he may be giving us an opportunity to learn about the game of life.

      Prayers, Terry. We wish you well.
    1. DAM DC Twins Fans's Avatar
      DAM DC Twins Fans -
      I am not a doctor. I didn't even stay in a Holiday Inn last night. (I am a CPA). Anyway, hopefully this is not too bad and Terry Ryan can be back opening day. Our prayers are with him. And yes, as somebody said, family and health come first, the Twins and baseball come second.
    1. Blackjack's Avatar
      Blackjack -
      Hearing the word 'cancer' in your diagnosis is scary, I can feel Terry's pain, I was diagnosised with melanoma skin cancer at the age of 42. Hopefully early detection will help him like it did me - I'm now 56. Long sleeved shirts, hats, and sunscreen are a way of life now.

      Good luck Terry!!
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