Irish golf champ Padraig Harrington opens up about skin cancer surgery

Pro golfer Padraig Harrington urged listeners to take their health seriously and visit the doctor when something’s wrong.

Padraig Harrington, one of Ireland’s greatest golfing legends, recently revealed his history of skin cancer.

The three-time-major-winner was on Ireland’s Today FM radio station to chat with host Matt Cooper about his current form on the course and his work off the course with the Esophageal Cancer Fund Ireland.

Harrington’s father, Paddy Harrington, passed away in 2005 from cancer of the esophagus.

Urging listeners to take their health seriously and schedule regular doctor visits, Harrington, 42, referred to the different attitudes towards health held by his generation and his father’s.

“My father, he died of esophageal cancer and a lot of it is down to the fact that he had symptoms he didn’t do anything about,” Harrington shared.  

“I can remember for most of my life running down to the shops to buy him a packet of antacids because he had indigestion and he just didn’t do anything about it because that’s the nature of men in Ireland, and certainly older men.”

The golf champ then explained that he makes appointments at the first sign of trouble.

“I’ve had a number of skin cancers removed off my face, but for other things I would go. If I get a pain in any sense I go and have it checked out, and it’s a little bit of hardship going but you feel much better afterwards,” he said.

"Instead of just one treatment they are now looking at combining different types of treatment of dealing with esophageal cancer.

"Everybody responds differently to treatment and ways of treating cancer are moving on. I see that we when I travel the world.

"It is easier to clear these things up at the start rather than waiting until there is a problem.

"You can get treated and go on to live a much longer life," he said.

He also spoke about Esophageal Cancer Fund Ireland’s Lollipop Day, which raises funds for esophageal cancer research and takes place from February 28 – March 1.  

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