DENVER - An Atlanta attorney will have surgery next month to remove lung tissue infected with extremely drug-resistant tuberculosis, hospital officials said Thursday.
Andrew Speaker will have surgery at the University of Colorado Hospital in suburban Aurora. The date has not been set.
Speaker is "an excellent candidate for surgery," said Dr. Charles Daley, head of infectious diseases at National Jewish Medical and Research Center, where Speaker is being treated.
"The infected area of his lung is relatively small and well-contained. He is also young and otherwise healthy," Daley said.
The infected area is about the size of a tennis ball, hospital officials said.
The operation should improve Speaker's chances of recovery by removing most of the tuberculosis organisms in his lungs, leaving fewer that must be killed by antibiotics, National Jewish said.
Speaker sparked an international scare when health officials tried to find and isolate him because his strain of TB is considered exceptionally dangerous.