Cancer Type – Throat
Bio – The American Baseball hero lost his battle to throat cancer at the age of 53, partially brought on by his fondness for tobacco and liquor.
Short Story – Nicknamed the “Bambino,” this Major League Baseball star played from 1914 – 1935, 22 seasons. Considered by many to be the greatest player of all time, achieving his greatest fame as a slugging outfielder for the New York Yankees.
Babe Ruth was a larger-than-life legend in the Roaring Twenties. Yet, it wasn’t until after his career in 1946, that he was diagnosed with a cancerous lump in his neck. Experiencing severe pain in his left eye, doctors removed a mass that had wrapped around his left carotid vein in November 1946. He received post-op radiation therapy and left the hospital 80 pounds lighter, 4 months later (February 1947).
Ruth became ill from nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPCA), a rare growth located at the back of the nasal passage near the eustachian tube.
He underwent experimental treatment, not knowing it was for cancer. His case was one of the first to use the methotrexate drug. Ruth was actually one of the first patients ever to do chemotherapy. The drug that Ruth took was called teropterin, extracted the antifolates from brewer’s yeast. The compound seemed to work in a few mice, but it had never been tried in humans. It was made available for Ruth’s use. He started to take daily doses on June 29, 1947. It worked for a while but about 13 and a half months later he passed away in 1948, believing he was “The Luckiest Man” in the world.
|Born||February 6, 1895, Baltimore, Maryland|
|Died||August 16, 1948 (aged 53), Manhattan, New York|
|Batted: Left||Threw: Left|
|July 11, 1914, for the Boston Red Sox|
|Last MLB appearance|
|May 30, 1935, for the Boston Braves|
|Runs batted in||2,213|
|Earned run average||2.28|
|Boston Red Sox (1914–1919)|
|New York Yankees (1920–1934)|
|Boston Braves (1935)|
|Career highlights and awards|
|2× All-Star (1933, 1934)|
|7× World Series champion (1915, 1916, 1918, 1923, 1927, 1928, 1932)|
|AL MVP (1923)|
|AL batting champion (1924)|
|12× AL home run leader (1918–1921, 1923, 1924, 1926–1931)|
|6× AL RBI leader (1919–1921, 1923, 1926, 1928)|
|AL ERA leader (1916)|
|New York Yankees No. 3 retired|
|Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame|
|Major League Baseball All-Century Team|
|Major League Baseball All-Time Team|
|Other career achievements and records|
|Member of the National|
|Baseball Hall of Fame|
Image Credits – By Irwin, La Broad, & Pudlin. [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons