Lifestyle & Belief

Good Morning America co-host announces she has MDS (VIDEO)


Robin Roberts, cohost of Good Morning America, announced she is seeking treatment for MDS.


Janette Pellegrini

Good Morning America co-host Robin Roberts announced this morning that she has been diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), otherwise known as preleukemia. 

The Mayo Clinic defines MDS as a group of disorders caused by poorly formed or dysfunctional blood cells. Myelodysplastic syndromes occur when something goes wrong in a person's bone marrow — the spongy material inside bones where blood cells are made.

CNN noted that the term "preleukemia" can be misleading, as most MDS cases do not become cancerous. However, certain types of MDS can progress to acute myeloid leukemia. 

The Mayo Clinic also notes that there is no cure for myelodysplastic syndromes. Treatment for myelodysplastic syndromes usually focuses on reducing or preventing complications of the disease. In Roberts case, she will be receiving a bone marrow transplant. 

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Five years ago Roberts announced she both fought and beat breast cancer. MDS can be caused by the very treatment that saved Roberts from breast cancer. 

In a statement Roberts said, "My doctors tell me I'm going to beat this -- and I know it's true. If you Google MDS, you may find some scary stuff, including statistics that my doctors insist don’t apply to me. They say I’m younger and fitter than most people who confront this disease and will be cured."

Roberts explained that she learned she was suffering from MDS one day prior to interviewing President Obama.

"The combination of landing the biggest interview of my career and having a drill in my back reminds me that God only gives us what we can handle and that it helps to have a good sense of humor when we run smack into the absurdity of life."

Roberts plans to continue to anchor Good Morning America while receiving treatment.

Roberts announced her pretreatment plan this morning on the show: 

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