ST. PAUL, Minn. - In his first public appearance since undergoing surgery to treat prostate cancer, Governor Mark Dayton said he has received an "absolutely clean" pathology report.
Dayton held a press conference to sign a bipartisan bill providing disaster aid to the city of Madelia and Watonwan County, after fire devastated Madelia's downtown business district last year.
The bigger news of the day, addressed in the question and answer period that followed the bill signing, was the governor's health.
Dayton underwent surgery March 2 following a January diagnosis of prostate cancer. On Friday, just over a week after the procedure, Dayton said he feels "pretty good."
"Aftermath of surgery is not enjoyable," he told reporters, "but the important news is that I got an absolutely clean pathology report that has no evidence of any spread of the cancer beyond the prostate, which is entirely removed. So that’s the part that really matters for the long run, and the rest of it is just waiting, taking one day at a time."
Dayton said the normal disability period for this type of procedure is four weeks, but he and his doctor have agreed to shorten that.
"As I’ve said before, there are no brain cells in my prostate," Dayton said. "I don’t take any pain medication except for Tylenol once or twice a day, so I feel clear headed and up to speed and ready to carry on with the Legislature over these next two and a half months."
The Democratic governor revealed his diagnosis just a day after he collapsed during his State of the State address Jan. 23. His doctors have said the cancer was caught early and is treatable. The Mayo team previously announced the governor's prostate cancer was not to blame for the fainting incident.
The cancer diagnosis is the latest health setback for Dayton. The 70-year-old governor has had several hip and back surgeries during his six years in office.