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Martina Navratilova’s Health: Her Battle With Cancer & How She’s

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  • Martina Navratilova is a former pro tennis player, who notably won 18 Grand Slams throughout her career.
  • The former athlete was diagnosed with two types of cancer in Nov. 2022, however, she did not reveal it to the public until Jan. 2023.
  • Martina took to Twitter on Jun. 19, 2023, to announce that she was officially cancer free and “all clear.”

Former pro tennis player Martina Navratilova, 66, has been in the headlines recently for her ongoing battle with cancer. The 66-year-old, who is married to The Real Housewives of Miami star Julia Lemigova, recently took to Twitter to update her fans on her health and was pleased to announce she was “all clear” from cancer. Amid the positive news on Martina’s health, below is everything to know about the Czech–born American athlete’s cancer battles and how she is doing now.

Martina Navratilova healthMartina Navratilova & her wife, Julia Lemigova (L). (Erik Pendzich/Shutterstock)

Martina Navratilova Diagnosed With Cancer

At the start of Jan. 2023, Martina told TENNIS.com that she was diagnosed with throat and breast cancer in Nov. 2022. She discovered an enlarged lymph node in her neck and sought medical tests to confirm that it was indeed cancer. The results revealed that the blonde beauty had Stage 1 throat cancer in addition to breast cancer. “This double whammy is serious but still fixable, and I’m hoping for a favorable outcome,” she told the sports outlet on Jan. 2, 2023. “It’s going to stink for a while, but I’ll fight with all have I got.”

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This is not the first time that Martina got diagnosed with cancer, as she was diagnosed with breast cancer (ductal carcinoma in situ, or DCIS) in 2010. Six months after her initial diagnosis over a decade ago, she was told she was cancer free. Martina underwent a lumpectomy and six weeks of radiation in order to treat her first breast cancer.

What Is Throat & Breast Cancer?

Throat cancer is a type of cancer that occurs in the pharynx or voice box (larynx), per the Mayo Clinic website. When it is in the throat it is known as pharyngeal cancer, however, when it is located in the voice box it is known as laryngeal cancer. Some of the symptoms listed on the clinic’s website includes sore throat, a cough, changes in the voice when speaking, a lump or sore, and more. A few options for treatment include radiation or surgery.

Breast cancer, which Martina has had twice, is a cancer that forms “in the cells of the breasts”, per the Mayo Clinic. Although skin cancer is known to be the most common cancer diagnosis for women in the United States, breast cancer comes in second. The cancer can occur in both men and women, however, it is more common in women. A few symptoms include breast lumps, change in the size, shape, or appearance of the breast, redness, and more. Treatment for breast cancer varies but can include radiation or surgery. Diagnosis of breast cancer can involve a mammogram, an MRI, bone scans, blood tests, and more.

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How Long Has Martina Navratilova Been Sick?

Julia’s wife was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010 and once again at the end of 2022. Prior to her remission state, she was ill for six months in 2010. “I really didn’t talk much about breast cancer before I had it,” she told PEOPLE in 2023. “Now, I’m approached by women and we share our stories. It’s encouraging to see that there’s life after cancer.”

In Mar. 2023, Julia told her RHOM co-stars that she and Martina wanted to adopt a child, however, it had been put on hold due to her health issues. “When you’re adopting a child, it has to be about the child. And right now it’s everything about Martina and for her getting health. We’re putting it on hold,” the 50-year-old said, via PEOPLE.

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How Is Martina Navratilova Doing Today?

Martina announced multiple times in 2023 that she was cancer free, including during Mar. 2023 interview on Piers Morgan Uncensored on TalkTV. “As far as they know I’m cancer-free,” she revealed at the time. Martina explained that she had preventative radiation but “should be good to go.” More recently, she took to Twitter on Jun. 19, 2023, to announce she had more scans done with additional good news. “After a day full of tests at Sloan Kettering, I got the all clear! Thank you to all the doctors, nurses, proton and radiation magicians etc- what a relief:) #byebyecancer 🙂 and yes, #f***cancer !!!”, she wrote.

Ahead of her remission state, Martina told Piers Morgan that she was worried she was not going to see the holidays.  “I was in a total panic for three days thinking I may not see next Christmas,” she said. At the time of her health scares, she knew what she wanted to do for her bucket list. “The bucket list came into my mind of all the things I wanted to do,” Martina explained. “And this may sound really shallow, but I was like, okay, ‘Which kick-a** car do I really want to drive if I live like a year?’”

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