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Franklin Roosevelt died of cancer: Book

books Updated: Jan 01, 2010 19:01 IST

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US's wartime President Franklin D Roosevelt's real cause of death has been a subject of debate for years, with rumours persisting that he suffered from heart disease and polio which led to his demise in 1945.

Now, 65 years on, a new book has claimed that President Roosevelt died of cancer -- in fact he suffered from melanoma, which spread to his brain and abdomen, and that he died of a brain tumour, the 'New York Post' reported.

The book, 'FDR's Deadly Secret', is penned by Steven Lomazow and Eric Fettmann.

Fettmann, said the theory is based on observation, not physical evidence, because President Roosevelt's medical records disappeared soon after his death and an autopsy was never conducted.

Fettmann said in the weeks before President Roosevelt died he delivered a speech to Congress on Yalta Conference."He was rambling, he clearly seemed to lose his place in the text. Things he was saying were almost completely unintelligible. People chalked it up to exhaustion," he said.

Lomazow and Fettmann made one of about a dozen trips to President Roosevelt's historic site in Hyde Park to look at the original text he had read from, and to see how the words were laid out.

"We discovered that the mistakes he made were almost all on the left side of the text of the left side of words. This indicates a condition called hemianopsia, which happens when you have a tumor on the right side of your brain and you lose the left field of vision.

"We contend that as early as 1940, when he was still in his second term, Roosevelt was diagnosed with melanoma, which was then and now one of the deadliest types of cancer.

"We say he died as a result of a brain tumour that was the result of metastasised melanoma. With a brain tumour, this was inevitable and the timing could have been predicted very closely," Fettmann said.