Former NHL referee Kerry Fraser diagnosed with cancer

BY AP • November 3, 2017

TORONTO (AP) Former NHL referee Kerry Fraser has been diagnosed with an incurable form of blood cancer.

Fraser wrote on the NHL's website Friday that he has a rare blood disorder called essential thrombocythemia, known as ET.

He described it as ''an incurable cancer in the leukemia family, although in rare instances it can evolve into a related disease called myelofibrosis, or into acute leukemia.''

He added that while it is incurable, patients can live a normal life with it for many years. However, it carries a danger of developing blood clots that can lead to a heart attack or stroke.

''I consider myself blessed that this rare disease was diagnosed before I had a stroke or heart attack,'' he wrote. ''At 65, I was planning on living a healthy, full life for many more years. Now that I know I have this disease I can take extra precautions to keep my blood thinner and hopefully prevent a blood clot from hitting my heart or brain.''

Fraser retired in 2010 after 30 years as an NHL referee.

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