US Representative John Garamendi declares cancer diagnosis

Garamendi, a Democrat from Walnut Grove, announced his diagnosis in a opinion and a Video posted on social media.

“My wife, Patti, a leader in the Congressional Families Cancer Prevention Program, makes sure I stay vigilant about screenings and treatments. Freezing abnormal bumps is normal, but a call from my doctor changed everything: 'When are you coming back to California? You need to come in for a series of tests,'” he said.

“This is how my journey with early-stage multiple myeloma, a treatable form of blood cancer, began.”

According to the Cleveland ClinicMultiple myeloma occurs when healthy plasma cells turn out to be abnormal and produce abnormal antibodies, resulting in medical problems and diseases that may affect bones, kidneys, and the body's ability to supply blood cells and platelets.

Garamendi, 79, said he’s currently undergoing chemo-immunotherapy as an outpatient within the Sacramento area.

“Thanks to early detection, amazing doctors, and the love and support of Patti, our entire family, my extraordinary staff, and my colleagues in Congress, I know I will get through this while continuing to serve my constituents and advance American democracy,” he said.

Garamendi said he has a “long list of projects and goals” for his constituents in Contra Costa and Solano counties and he plans to proceed his work while he undergoes treatment.

“But chemotherapy not only destroys cancer cells, it also weakens natural antibodies and the immune system,” he said. “My doctors have advised me to minimize contact with COVID-19, flu and other viruses, so I will limit travel to Washington and public events during treatment.”

Garamendi has had a protracted political profession that began along with his election to the California State Legislature in 1974. In addition to 4 terms within the State Senate, he served as Insurance Commissioner from 1991 to 1995 and again from 2003 to 2006.

In 1995, Garamendi was appointed Deputy Secretary of the Interior by President Bill Clinton. In 2007, he was elected Lieutenant Governor. Two years later, he won a seat within the U.S. House of Representatives, where he’s now serving his eighth term.

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