- Atlanta 08/20/2015 by Linda Perry (The Carter Center)
President Jimmy Carter Discussed His Medical Condition And Reflected on His Life's Work At The Carter Center, August 20, 2015
President Jimmy Carter updated his medical condition Thursday morning. He revealed he has brain cancer. He said he would be starting radiation treatments in the afternoon. He gets a round of four treatments every three weeks. Yesterday he said he received a medication, pembrolizumab, intravenously to enhance his immune system. He said he it gave him a great night's sleep, from 6 at night to 8 in the morning.
Jimmy Carter has melanoma spots on his brain, which showed up in a recent MRI. Carter's doctors at Emory University Hospital believed the melanoma started somewhere else and spread to his liver. 98% of melanomas are found outside the body, but doctors say about 2% are internal. And this is the type of melanoma found on Jimmy Carter.
"I’m perfectly at ease with whatever comes." The 39th President was poised and in good spirits discussing his medical condition and treatment ahead. "I do have deep religious faith, which I'm grateful for. And I was pleasantly surprised that I didn't go into an attitude of despair and anger. I was just completely at ease. I'm ready for anything and I'm looking forward to a new adventure."
Carter said he will try and stay active teaching Sunday School, and classes at Emory University, but he'll have to see what the doctors say. He is most proud of the Carter Center. It focuses on global issues, including health care and democracy. Jimmy Carter said running the Carter Foundation, has been more personally gratifying than being Commander-In-Chief.
"When you're President, you have a responsibility for over 350 million people and 3,000 members of the armed forces, budgets, and Congress, and so forth...
I was able to do a number of good things while I was President, of which I'm very grateful. That was a high point of my life, (politically speaking.) And I would say that having been President of the United States -- a great country, has made it possible for me to have the influence and contact with people, and the knowledge that has been the foundation for the Carter Center.
We deal with individual people in the smallest, most obscure, and suffering villages in the desert, and in the jungles of Africa. We have had programs in 80 different countries for the poorest and most destitute people in the world. That has been far more gratifying personally because we actually interact with families and with people. Going into villages and learning about them and what their actual needs are, and then meeting those needs with the superb Carter Center medical staff has been one of the best things that has ever happened to me. I said several times that my life since the White House has been personally more gratifying."