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Satoru Iwata Had Surgery Last Week

A growth was found in Iwata's bile duct, explaining why Nintendo's leader wasn't at E3 this year.

We now know the reason Nintendo president Satoru Iwata wasn't at E3 earlier this month. A growth was found in the executive's bile duct, and surgery was performed last week.

Iwata disclosed the additional medical information on the company's website today.

Besides missing E3, Iwata will also skip this month's annual shareholders meeting to focus on recovering from his surgery. Iwata said he does not expect additional medical complications from the discovered growth.

Here's Iwata's full statement:

"Thank you very much for your continued extraordinary support of us. I am Satoru Iwata, President of the company.

Today, there is one thing that I would like to share with you.

Recently, as the result of one of my routine physical examinations, an issue was detected. Following a more detailed examination, a growth was found in my bile duct.

In general, it is said that a bile duct growth can be difficult-to-treat, partly because of the difficulty of detecting it early. In my case, luckily, it was detected very early and I had no symptoms.

I was counseled that removal at an early stage would be the desirable medical option. Therefore I had surgery last week, and I came through it well, as predicted.

I have already resumed my business by email and by other means, but it is anticipated that a little more time is needed for me to return to my regular work schedule.

As a result, I have no choice but to miss the company’s very important activity, the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders, to be held this month. As the president of the company, I regret that I cannot attend the meeting. However, I understand that I have to prioritize my medical treatment and to recover as soon as possible so that I will again be able to do my best to help the company to grow. I hope that you understand."

Feel better, Iwata.

Patrick Klepek on Google+
52 Comments
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Posted by Video_Game_King

I don't know. This feels more like celebrity gossip than it does news that impacts the gaming community.

Edited by HammondofTexas

Reggie actually beat the crap out of him and he's mending his wounds.

Posted by patrickklepek

I don't know. This feels more like celebrity gossip than it does news that impacts the gaming community.

It's not like we're publishing photos of Steve Jobs outside of a Starbucks. This is a public statement from the head of one of gaming's most important video game companies. Feels pretty important to me.

Staff
Posted by mrsmiley

Public figures are public figures, and thus always the subject of gossip. I'm sure he presented this information so people wouldn't start gossiping about him when he didn't show up at various events. Glad he caught this early!

Posted by ChrisTaran

Hope all is well with him and he makes a speedy recovery now!

Posted by Nightriff

Wish him a fast and speedy recovery.

Edited by LameImpala

Love that he managed to squeeze in a good ol' "please understand" at the end. Glad he's alright.

Edited by Brodehouse

Good, I guess?

Edited by Seeric
@video_game_king said:

I don't know. This feels more like celebrity gossip than it does news that impacts the gaming community.

I think there are two big differences here to keep in mind. The first difference is that this article is referencing a public notice posted by Iwata himself, making this significantly different from standard 'celebrity stalking' practices. Secondly, Iwata's a major figure in gaming and him largely missing E3 due to medical complications was a pretty big thing which many people in the gaming community would have wanted an update on if one materialized (which it has); the head of Nintendo missing the shareholders meeting is also definitely something which is going to 'impact the gaming community' in some way, especially since Nintendo's financial sales have been iffy as of late and how Iwata planned to reassure stockholders this year has been a question which has been brought up here and there.

Posted by TimesHero

@video_game_king said:

I don't know. This feels more like celebrity gossip than it does news that impacts the gaming community.

It's not like we're publishing photos of Steve Jobs outside of a Starbucks. This is a public statement from the head of one of gaming's most important video game companies. Feels pretty important to me.

I concur.

Edited by TrafalgarLaw

whoa...he dodged a bullet there if it was (pre)malign bile duct cancer...you could not get any luckier with a very lethal cancer like that by very early detection like this.

Posted by whitegreyblack

I don't know. This feels more like celebrity gossip than it does news that impacts the gaming community.

Being able to explain a very worthwhile reason for the President of Nintendo missing one of their most important annual events seems pretty news-worthy.

If Patrick posted a story entitled "Exclusive: PHOTOS of Iwata's surgery - is it a Sex-Change?! The Five Important Things You Need to Know", I'd be right there with you on this one. However, that's not the case.

Edited by JackSukeru

We are going to need a little more time before the president of Nintendo is ready, please look forward to it!

I'm glad that he's ok, it's got to be a lot of pressure to work in the position he does, so I hope that he is afforded enough time to properly recover.

Posted by Fitzgerald

I think the growth on his bile duct was Wii Music.

Posted by mangopup

@sethphotopoulos said:

Not sure he had to tell everyone the specifics but feel better.

I think if TotalBiscuit having colon cancer is any indication, we shouldn't be grossed out or consider it taboo to talk about or bring awareness to parts of our body that do dirty jobs.

Posted by bonzaiimonkey

I think the growth on his bile duct was Wii Music.

Classy

Posted by MattyFTM

I like to imagine Iwata demanding that they use the Wii Vitality Sensor instead of a normal Cardiac Monitor for the operation.

Moderator Online
Posted by DeF

Not sure he had to tell everyone the specifics but feel better.

It's a statement mainly meant to explain to the shareholders why he will not be attending the annual meeting. They would want to know he's not just sitting at home with the sniffles gobbling down chicken soup.

Online
Posted by Aviar

Nintendo is a publicly traded company, so this is real news. Unlike the tabloids that talk trash. Considering the shareholder meeting coming up, he almost has to make a statement like this even though he does have privacy rights, it's still the right thing to do so rumors don't run rampant and start affecting the companies stock price.

Posted by csl316

Glad they got it early.

Edited by Dezinus

Aw, Iwata. I can't hate you.

Edited by Food

Man, I didn't even know bile had ducts...

Posted by darthslughorn

If only this article's headline was "Here's Why Nintendo's Head Wasn't at E3" and sub "You're Not Going to Believe This." Then Giant Bomb would have made it.

Edited by TruthTellah

This is how I imagine the surgery went...

The growth on the ultrasound never had a chance!

Get well soon, Iwata! :)

Posted by ripelivejam

bile ducks sounds a little more appealing (ok not really)

get well soon iwata

Posted by crusader8463

Wish him the best of luck.

Posted by spraynardtatum

Iwata is king!!!!

Edited by Stimpack

I don't understand how people around here can be so callous. Good grief. I hope Iwata gets well soon, people were wondering what was going on and I'm glad he was open about it.

Posted by Dan_CiTi

Good luck Iwata!

Posted by VierasTalo

It's kind of super cool that they come out with this information on their own.

Also glad the man is in good health.

Posted by StriderNo9

The news piece is relevant to gamers. And as a human I'm hoping for the best for him and his family.

Posted by Snail

I hope he has a speedy and full recovery.

Posted by dudeglove

So what I gleamed from their E3 vid is that Iwata is basically E. Honda, right?

Posted by Mr_Creeper

@video_game_king said:

I don't know. This feels more like celebrity gossip than it does news that impacts the gaming community.

It's not like we're publishing photos of Steve Jobs outside of a Starbucks. This is a public statement from the head of one of gaming's most important video game companies. Feels pretty important to me.

I'd be okay with you guys "publishing photos of Steve Jobs outside of a Starbucks." Maybe it'd lead us to TuPac and Biggie's location.

Posted by KaneRobot

I don't know. This feels more like celebrity gossip than it does news that impacts the gaming community.

I don't think it's that severe, although it is a little jarring to see something like this on the site. It may have happened before but I don't recall seeing health updates on industry figures in the news here before.

Posted by RenegadeSaint

Wow, I'd be interested to hear the pathology results. I sincerely hope it is benign because gallbladder and biliary tree cancers are extremely mortal.

Edited by Brackynews

@sethphotopoulos said:

Not sure he had to tell everyone the specifics but feel better.

Shareholders care very much about how healthy CEOs are. It's not for us. If he didn't have to miss the annual meeting it would probably have been a footnote during the call.

@mr_creeper: Figures this community wouldn't make an Elvis reference. ;)

Posted by paulunga

New Trauma Center confirmed!

Posted by Fattony12000
Posted by Kaigan

Iwata's bile duct? You mean his production pipeline?

Boom!

Posted by StriderNo9

I'm all for inappropriate jokes, but the guy could be dying.

Posted by AMyggen

Sucks to hear, hope he recovers from this.

Posted by ThatOneDudeNick

I don't know what that means, but it sounds horrible. Hope he gets better.

Posted by Naoiko

Oh goodness! I'm glad they found it early. Praying for a speedy recovery for him.

Posted by Wicked_Wumpus

I'm pleased to see that there's a fairly low number of comments blaming Patrick for stupid clickbait articles that "aren't relevant to games". Good work guys, I think we're starting to grow up a bit.

Get well soon Iwata!

Posted by zedman

よく、すぐ岩田聡取得

Posted by InternetFamous

@wicked_wumpus: Well, it IS legitimate news about the head of the most storied video game company of all time. Moreover, it's an official statement, not just some rumor. It would be silly not to report it.

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