Doctors Trying To Keep Mickey Mantle Pain-Free
DALLAS (AP) _ Doctors have suspended Mickey Mantle’s chemotherapy because he is too weak and are just trying to keep the cancer-stricken Hall of Famer free of pain, a hospital spokeswoman said Friday.
``Right now, he’s pretty weak, so anything beyond just pain treatment would be difficult to try,″ said Denise Kile Walton of Baylor University Medical Center. ``We’re trying to let him rest and we’re observing him closely.″
All treatment decisions are ``very much a day-to-day situation,″ and no chemotherapy was scheduled even though the cancer has spread to the former baseball player’s abdomen, Kile Walton said.
Mantle, 63, remains in serious condition. He has been diagnosed with hepatoma, an aggressive form of cancer.
Mantle went into the hospital on May 28 with stomach pains and underwent a transplant on June 8 to replace his liver, ravaged by cancer, hepatitis and years of hard drinking.
On Aug. 1, doctors said the cancer had spread to his right lung, and he re-entered the hospital on Aug. 4 for treatment of anemia stemming from chemotherapy. This week, Mantle learned the cancer had spread to his abdomen.
Mantle spent much of Friday visiting with family, and on Thursday he visited with former New York Yankees teammates Whitey Ford, Hank Bauer, Bill ``Moose″ Skowron, Bobby Richardson and Johnny Blanchard.
``We just talked about the old times and new times,″ Skowron said. ``He was in great spirits. We had a good time.″
Mantle, who lives in Dallas, replaced DiMaggio as the Yankees’
centerfielder in 1951. He retired in 1968 with 536 home runs.
His career was sidetracked by many injuries. Doctors speculated Mantle
contracted hepatitis from blood transfusions he received during operations he
underwent while a player.