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Tony Iommi Back in Hospital

Tony Iommi
Paul Kane, Getty Images

Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi has posted an update at his official website in which he recaps the band’s just-finished North American tour, while also revealing that he headed right back into the hospital for more cancer treatments as soon as the trek was completed. Iommi wrote, “Well, we’ve finished the U.S. leg of our world tour. It was a bit longer than I would have liked as I’ve already been in hospital having another infusion.The tour was amazing though, you always hope it’s going to go well but you never know, it’s great to look out and see so many people of all ages.”

Sabbath has been touring in support of 13, the first Sabbath album in 35 years to feature him, bassist Geezer Butler and singer Ozzy Osbourne playing together. Iommi wrote, “The new songs have been going down well, we’ve played them enough now so we’re comfortable and that helps the performance.”

Iommi revealed in January of 2012 that he had been diagnosed with lymphoma, which is described by the Mayo Clinic as “a cancer of the lymphatic system, the body’s disease-fighting network.”

He described his “infusion” treatments to the Birmingham Mail earlier this year, explaining, “I have to have an antibody administered by drip every six weeks or so to keep the lymphoma in check. It sort of coats the cancer cells, stops it from going anywhere else. I have to come back home no matter where I might be in the world.”

He added, “The tour dates are arranged so that I can always get back for treatment. It’s the only way I can manage my illness and keep on the road. I’d love to play more shows . . . but my health has to be sorted out first.”

The legendary guitarist said that his treatment is a relatively new process and doctors are not sure what all the side effects might be. He also said that it “takes around 10 days to fully recover from each round of treatment, but if that’s what it takes, I have to accept it.”
Black Sabbath will next head to South America, beginning on October 4th, to be followed by European and U.K. treks.

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