By Mary Slosson
SACRAMENTO (Reuters) - California Governor Jerry Brown is undergoing treatment for early-stage prostate cancer with an excellent prognosis for recovery, and the 74-year-old Democrat is expected to keep up a full work schedule, his office said on Wednesday.
"Fortunately, this is early-stage localized prostate cancer, which is being treated with a short course of conventional radiotherapy," Dr. Eric Small, Brown's oncologist, said in a statement.
"The prognosis is excellent, and there are not expected to be any significant side effects," he added. Small is the co-director of the urology program at the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center.
Brown, who had a cancerous growth removed from the right side of his nose in April 2011, will complete the treatment for prostate cancer in early January, his office said, and is expected to keep a full work schedule.
During Brown's outpatient cancer treatment in 2011, doctors removed basal carcinoma cells and did reconstructive surgery to his nose.
Brown's office did not immediately respond to questions as to when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer, how long he had been undergoing treatment, and where he was being treated.
One in every six men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during their lifetime, according to the U.S. National Institutes of Health. It is the most common cause of cancer-related death for men over 75 years of age.
Brown became one of the youngest governors of California when he took office in 1975 at age 36, going on to serve two consecutive terms. He later returned to that office in 2011 and is now the oldest governor the state has ever had.
Brown faded from public view after two failed presidential runs following his initial stint in the governor's mansion, but resurrected his political career in 1998, transforming himself into a quirky, pragmatic mayor of Oakland.
After eight years in Oakland, the San Francisco Bay Area's crime-ridden former industrial center, Brown was elected California attorney general and held the post until he was elected governor again in 2011.
(Reporting by Mary Slosson; Editing by Cynthia Johnston and David Brunnstrom)
(c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2012. Check for restrictions at: http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp