Polhill to Have Throat Surgery

<i> Associated Press</i>

Freed American hostage Robert Polhill has a cancerous growth around his vocal cords that will require surgeons to remove his voice box, his physicians said Wednesday.

Such radical surgery, scheduled for today, might have been avoided if the tumor had been diagnosed sooner, doctors said.

The tumor “is quite old, probably at least a year,” said Col. Russ Zajtchuk, deputy commander of clinical services at Walter Reed Medical Center.

There is no evidence the cancer has spread, but Polhill’s treatment will include radiation therapy.


Polhill, 55, was held captive by Shiite Muslims in Lebanon for 39 months before being freed April 22.