Local doctor talks about the type of cancer McCain is fighting - KCTV5

Local doctor talks about the type of cancer McCain is fighting

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(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File) In this July 11, 2017, file photo, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., arrives on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File) In this July 11, 2017, file photo, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., arrives on Capitol Hill in Washington.
SHAWNEE MISSION, KS (KCTV) -

Senator John McCain has been diagnosed with glioblastoma, a form of primary brain cancer that affects three in 100,000 people every year. On Thursday, KCTV5 News talked to an expert at HCA Midwest Health to learn more about the disease.

According to neurooncologists there, the disease is not only rare, but incredibly aggressive.

Pictures show just how fast the tumor can grow in a span of months, increasing the pressure in the brain.

Dr. Amandeep Kalra said symptoms depend on the location of the tumor, but that there are three factors that determine someone's survival rate.

Those factors are: The extent of the surgery itself, their age and, most importantly, their functional status.

Kalra said the latter is a good sign for Senator McCain. "He did not have any neurological deficiencies before and after surgery, so his functional status was pretty good,” Kalra noted.

Kalra says there is no evidence of anything that could cause the aggressive form of cancer.

He notes that survival, though generally around 16 months, varies from person to person.

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