Robin Roberts Diagnosed With MDS — Details on Her Disease

Mon, June 11, 2012 2:34pm EDT by 21 Comments
Robin Roberts MDS

‘Good Morning America’ host Robin Roberts announced on Monday June 11 that she was diagnosed with Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS), a blood disorder affecting the stem cells in the bone marrow. Find out all the details on the disease!

Robin Roberts bravely announced to the world on Monday June 11 that she has been diagnosed with Myelodysplastic Syndrome, formerly known as preleukemia.

The GMA host held back tears as she held her co-hosts hands and revealed her painful secret that she’s held for more than a month. MDS is a blood-related condition that involves ineffective production of the myeloid class of blood cells. “It is a rare blood disorder that affects the bone marrow,” she said.

Left without a transplant, the disease worsens and the patient develops low blood counts due to progressive bone marrow failure. Found mostly in patients between 60 and 75, Robin was diagnosed at the age of 51-years-old — leaving her with a good prognosis.

Symptoms can involve severe anemia and require frequent blood transfusions. The mean life-expectancy is 18 to 24 months in mild cases of MDS or even longer when stem cell transplantation is done, but all cases vary.

Robin, who has experienced a series of highs and lows throughout her career, announced that her sister, Sally-Ann Roberts, would be her donor! “I am blessed,” Robin said because her sister is a “virtually perfect” bone marrow match. Thankfully, Robin’s doctors are optimistic of her recovery! “My doctors tell me I’m going to beat this — and I know it’s true,” Robin said.

Success of bone marrow transplantation has been found to correlate with severity of MDS.

Famous patients with MDS include astronomer Carl Sagan and writer Roald Dahl James and the Giant PeachCharlie and the Chocolate Factory,) and more.

We wish Robin the best and will be rooting for her throughout her treatments!

HollywoodLifers, do you know someone with MDS? Tell us your story below!

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– Chris Rogers

More on Robin Roberts:

  1. Robin Roberts’ Cancer Announcement — GMA Host Diagnosed With MDS
  2. Here’s What YOU Have To Say About Chris Brown’s Apology For His ‘GMA’ Outburst!
  3. Chris Brown: Did He Smash Window At ‘GMA’ After Questions On Rihanna Assault? Exclusive Pics

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Thomas Poole

Posted at 6:14 AM on January 23, 2014  

I was diagnosed with MDS at least 6 months ago. I have had 4 rounds of dacogen (chemo). I feel extremely tired after the chemo. Have great friends and a son rooting for me. Having treatment at UM Sylvester cancer center. Hoping to have a donor and move on with my life. Please consider donating at BE THE MATCH.COM. You could save someone’s life.

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Richard Chong

Posted at 4:51 PM on August 12, 2012  

It is a blessing, and we can only imagine, such a wonderful and happy feeling to know you have a donor. Our 18 years old daughter, Katie, has MDS. We have been trying, without success, to find a matching donor since she was diagnosed in September 2011. It has become even more difficult because of her mixed ethnicity. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

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Emilia hurst

Posted at 11:32 PM on June 11, 2012  

Robin,

I’ll be waiting for the day when you reveal you are cancer free. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

I hope you don’t miss too many days on GMA. I love all of you together.

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Debbie Wilkins

Posted at 9:09 PM on June 11, 2012  

Robin, God bless you and the journey you face. You are brave an couragous and I will keep you in my prayers. God bless your sister, Sally-Ann also. I just love you and the energy you carry ~ stay strong, tell yourself everyday, several times” I LOVE YOU ROBIN”…AND NEVER STOP BELIEVING!

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Betty Rifford

Posted at 4:50 PM on June 11, 2012  

Robin, You are in my prayers. You and the whole team of GMA are my heroes.

Prayers dear lady!

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Diane Desjardins

Posted at 1:03 PM on June 11, 2012  

Dear Robin,

My thoughts and prayers are with you as you travel down yet another unknown road. You are a very special person Robin. You have helped more people than you know just by being yourself. You helped me through some very tough times. I’m sending you a big hug filled with love! I wish you the very best possible. Take care!

With heartfelt love and respect,
Diane.

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sschrader

Posted at 11:17 AM on June 11, 2012  

Robin.
We are praying for you!!! I know you will beat this. you are a strong woman of faith. We are praying for your whole family

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CDavis

Posted at 11:12 AM on June 11, 2012  

Robin,
you are God’s child and he continue to use you for His Purpose and Glory. Continue to trust in The Father and be a brave solider and keep that bright light shinning through.
You are in my prayers. Love you Girl!!!

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ELLIE

Posted at 10:45 AM on June 11, 2012  

ROBIN YOU ARE A LOVELY LADY AND ALL WILL BE JUST FINE. AS YOU SAID YOU ARE A FIGHTER. I WISH YU ALL THE LUCK.

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