Argentine leader undergoes thyroid cancer surgery

By MICHAEL WARREN | January 4, 2012 | 9:11 AM EST

Rosa Calderon holds a picture of Argentina's President Cristina Fernandez that reads in Spanish "Be strong Cristina" outside the hospital where Fernandez will undergo surgery for thyroid cancer in Pilar, Argentina, Wednesday Jan. 4, 2012. The 58-year-old leader has papillary thyroid carcinoma, and her doctors said it was detected before it spread, so her condition should curable without chemotherapy. Vice President Amado Boudou will be in charge during the operation on Wednesday and for 20 days as she recovers. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Argentina's president is undergoing surgery to remove a cancerous thyroid gland.

Doctors say Cristina Fernandez's cancer was detected before it spread, and she has a very good chance of a complete cure.

Dr. Pedro Saco is leading the operation at private hospital in the suburbs of Buenos Aires. He is a veteran Argentine oncologist who specializes in cancers of the head and neck.

Fernandez flew to the Hospital Austral by helicopter early Wednesday and went under anesthesia several hours later. Doctors say they'll be able to report results by midday.

Supporters gathered outside the hospital waving signs backing Fernandez and her late husband Nestor Kirchner, who died of a heart attack in 2010.


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