Elizabeth Edwards was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004 and she underwent aggressive chemotherapy, surgery and radiation for the next two years to get rid of the tumor. However, it returned again in 2007, with a biposy revealing that the she had stage IV cancer and that it had spread to her bone.
It is now being reported that doctors have told the 61-year-old mother of three that her cancer has metastized to the liver and that at this stage it no longer makes sense to continue with treatment.
In a statement to PEOPLE, the Edwards family said: “Elizabeth has been advised by her doctors that further treatment of her cancer would be unproductive. She is resting at home with family and friends.”
Edwards took to her Facebook page to share her thoughts with friends and fans: “I have been sustained throughout my life by three saving graces — my family, my friends, and a faith in the power of resilience and hope.”
“These graces have carried me through difficult times and they have brought me more joy to the good times than I could ever have imagined. The days of our lives, for all of us, are numbered. We know that.”
One of these difficult times would be the scandal surrounding her estranged husband, former senator and presidential candidate John Edwards, who had an affair and fathered a child with a campaign aid during his bid for the 2008 presidential election. Elizabeth and John announced their separation at the beginning of this year, after 32 years of marriage.
According to the American Cancer Society, women with an initial diagnosis of stage IV — metastitic — cancer have a five-year survival rate, with only one in five women surviving beyond five years.
Read here about Nancy Reagan, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1987.
Images: Facebook and Wikimedia Commons