London: Venezuela President Hugo Chavez, who suffered from cancer, has been told by doctors that he has less than a year to live.
Chavez, 56, declared himself cancer-free after undergoing surgery in Cuba to remove a tumour and said no ‘malignant cells’ had been found.
Medical sources close Chavez have, however, countered his claims and insisted that his prognosis couldn``t be worse, adding that he will be lucky to survive until the presidential elections in October, The Daily Mail reports.
Brazilian magazine Veja, which claims to have spoken to medics treating Chavez, revealed that his cancer, which had been confined to his colon and prostrate gland, has now spread into other parts of his body, including his bones.
They also claimed Cuban surgeons botched an operation to remove prostrate cancer, which may have caused the disease to spread more quickly.
According to the paper, Venezuelan doctors said that they broke the news to Chavez in August 2011 that the three-pronged approach using chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery had failed.
They suggested he be transferred to a specialist cancer centre in Europe, but Chavez refused.
Doctors claimed that, despite Chavez’s well-orchestrated public appearances and bold statements, he is seriously ill and knows he has just months to live.
According to medical sources, Chavez has told doctors that he would no longer subject himself to more aggressive treatments that would take him away from his public duties.