ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- Late last week we learned about congressman Jim Hagedorn's fight against an advanced form of kidney cancer.
Tuesday afternoon the first-term representative talked about that diagnosis and looking ahead to his re-election bid.
Representative Jim Hagedorn was only six weeks into his role representing Minnesota's 1st District when he first found out.
Hagedorn said it was through a routine physical that his doctors spotted something. "On a CT Scan (Medical Imaging) they found a mass on my kidney so you know pretty tough news."
The diagnosis: stage 4 kidney cancer, and so began his fight for his life and the people of the 1st District.
"Honestly I feel better today than before I knew I had cancer because I'm being treated," Rep. Hagedorn said. "I get a transfusion every three weeks and so it takes about a half hour and really no side effects."
In a video, Hagedorn announced he has been battling the cancer for a year. So we asked the congressman why he waited an year to publicly announce the diagnosis?
"I wanted to see how I would respond to treatment I also wanted to see how I could do my job going through treatment and both of those things very positive and then we're getting towards the election season..today is precinct caucus say so before I think you get into running for office again, let everyone know where you stand people can look back and see how much work you've done under the treatment and the diagnosis of cancer and I think on all levels it just kind of was the right time," Hagedorn stated.
Now the time is ticking to November with Hagedorn seeking re-election. "I said I was gonna be a conservative in the House, that I would vote that way I have, I've supported the president and his policies because they are my policies."
With his bid for re-election we asked Rep. Hagedorn if he feels like his battle with cancer will be brought up as the election process nears. He said the proof is in the pudding. Adding, he has not missed one vote in Washington, D.C. due to his illness.
Politics aside, Hagedorn wants to emphasize how important it is to get a routine physical. He said he was showing no symptoms when first diagnosed.
"I'd suggest going to the doctor getting things checked out, the sooner you find out that something is wrong, the quicker you can get treatment and the better the possible outcome," Hagedorn added.
Rep. Hagedorn and his family appreciate all the kind words and encouragement from people.
As for treatment, he is getting transfusions every three weeks, and his doctors say that'll go on indefinitely for now.