Toronto Mayor Rob Ford diagnosed with tumor

Wed Sep 10, 2014 10:37pm EDT
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TORONTO (Reuters) - Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, who gained global notoriety after a well-publicized battle with addiction, was admitted to hospital with a tumor in his abdomen on Wednesday, throwing his campaign for re-election into doubt.

Ford went to a Toronto hospital, complaining of abdominal pains that had lasted three months and worsened over the past day, a hospital official told reporters.

"Examination and investigation today revealed that he has a tumor," Dr. Rueben Devlin, the hospital's president said at a news conference in the north Toronto facility. "It's not a small tumor (but) the size is not as relevant as what it is.

"It's been going on for greater than three months, but today it became unbearable for him."

Devlin said tests to determine the nature of the tumor will be done this week, including a biopsy to see if the tumor is malignant and whether it has spread.

Ford became famous after admitting in November that he had smoked crack cocaine while in a "drunken stupor" and had driven after drinking. He entered a rehabilitation facility in May. Throughout the ensuing controversy, he said he would stand for re-election and has campaigned energetically.

Doug Ford, the mayor's brother and campaign manager who is also a city councillor, said the mayor complained about abdominal pains over breakfast. After seeing a doctor, he was quickly admitted to hospital.

A visibly shaken Doug Ford refused to comment on whether his younger brother would suspend his mayoral campaign or drop out.

"It saddens me that I have to be here today. Rob's in good spirits and just wanted to thank the well-wishers for all the calls that are coming in," Doug Ford said, asking for privacy for his family. "We'll speak about (the campaign) tomorrow."   Continued...

The outside of the Humber River Hospital where Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is hospitalized is seen in Toronto, September 10, 2014.  REUTERS/Mark Blinch