Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, the dynamic, populist former president of Brazil, will undergo chemotherapy to treat throat cancer.
Lula has a malignant tumor on his larynx, CNN reported, though doctors believe it is small and potentially containable.
Lula, 66, will be treated at Sao Paulo's Syrian-Lebanese Hospital, said hospital spokeswoman Mirtes Bogea. It is not clear what day the treatment will begin.
He was diagnosed Saturday morning after undergoing medical examinations, Bogea said.
"This is a localized tumor," noted Bogea. She added that the tumor has not metastasized, a characteristic of most cancerous cells.
The former president left office due to term limits, and was succeeded by his preferred candidate, Dilma Rousseff, the country's first female president. The cancer diagnosis, Global Post notes, could put a wrinkle in what many believed was Lula's plan: a run to reassume the presidency in 2014, after his term-limited exile.