Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Saved by TV ?

An Irish government minister has publicly thanked a sharp-eyed surgeon who spotted a growth on his face during a television appearance.

Irish Overseas Aid Minister Conor Lenihan said the surgeon, who has not been named, suggested that he seek medical advice after spotting the lump.

Doctors found a tumour which - although benign - required immediate surgery.

The 43-year-old has urged people to get even the smallest symptom checked by their doctor as soon as possible.

Mr Lenihan was taking part in a studio discussion show, Prime Time, on RTE television, the Irish state broadcaster, in December. A viewer, a surgeon in Galway in the west of Ireland, was watching at home when he spotted a lump on the left side of the minister's jaw.

The following day the surgeon rang Mr Lenihan's office in the capital Dublin, and left a message asking him to call back about "a private matter".

The surgeon advised him to see a head and neck specialist immediately.

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