Taipei, April 23 (CNA) A second tumor has been found in the prostate of former President Chen Shui-bian during tests he underwent at Taoyuan General Hospital Monday, according to his son, Chen Chih-chung.
The ex-president, who is serving a 17.5-year jail sentence for corruption at Taipei Prison, underwent an extensive follow-up medical checkup outside the prison Monday after he was diagnosed with a prostate tumor during his first examination six weeks ago.
The former president's daughter Chen Hsing-yu, his son, and prison guards were at the hospital during Chen's two-hour medical exam Monday morning.
According to the hospital's medical team, the examination consisted of an electrocardiogram, chest X-rays, blood tests, lung function tests, and an examination of the prostrate, and it said it explained the results to Chen's family afterwards.
Chen Chih-chung said the family was told by doctors that his father's original prostate tumor has grown in size and that a second tumor was also discovered.
The ex-president, who has been on medication to control tumor growth, will have to stop taking the medication for 10 days before a biopsy can be performed to determine the nature of the tumors, the son said.
Doctors also said the former president was suffering from lung and heart function problems, but the cause had yet to be identified, Chen Chih-chung added.
Chen Shui-bian was sent straight back to Taipei Prison after the checkup.
Upon learning the results of the exam, opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) spokesman Lin Chun-hsien said that based on humanitarian concerns, the former president should be released from prison on bail to receive more intensive medical attention.
Chen, who was the first DPP candidate to become president in 2000, is serving a combined jail term of 17.5 years in prison for corruption during his two terms of office from 2000 to 2008.
(By Sunrise Lin, Bien Chen-feng and C.J. Lin)