Who is Yevgeny Selivanov? Putin has been shadowed by cancer doctor for 166 days as rumors of his ill-health refuse to die
An investigation has claimed Russian President Vladimir Putin was visited by a cancer surgeon at least 35 times over the past four years at his Black Sea residence.
Proyekt, a Russian investigative journalism group, has claimed that Putin is reportedly attended by several doctors including Yevgeny Selivanov - a top oncologist who specializes in thyroid cancer. Selivanov is said to have visited the Russian strongman for a total of 166 days while he was in Sochi. Putin, a black belt judoka who turns 70 this October, is also said to have turned to alternative medicine for treatment.
Who is Yevgeny Selivanov?
Putin, who has always enjoyed his "alpha" image, may be suffering from a severe physical illness, according to the report by Proekt media, which is currently blocked in Russia. It states that Selivanov, a surgeon of Moscow's Central Clinical Hospital whose expertise is thyroid cancer, has flown to Putin no less than 35 times in the Black Sea resort Sochi.
According to The Sun, intelligence sources have suggested that the bloated face of the Russian leader may be a result of steroid treatment for cancer. The report additionally notes that Putin has "publicly shown interest in the problem of thyroid cancer" after meeting with the head of the National Medical Research Center for Endocrinology, Ivan Dedov in 2020.
According to the report, “Dedov told the president about the high prevalence of thyroid cancer and spoke about the new hormonal drug Tyrogin, which fights metastases after surgery. ‘Recovery of 95-98%?’ Putin asked and heard an affirmative answer.”
The report states that Putin "behaved especially strangely" in early autumn last year when he returned after a long isolation and met with Paralympians. “That is how, standing in a crowd of people, Putin suddenly announced that he had to go into isolation because there were too many people around who were sick with the coronavirus," the report continues. "The news came as a surprise even to the president's entourage. Whether the president was then undergoing some kind of medical manipulation is unknown, but after that, he began to communicate with people at a very great distance - sitting on opposite sides of huge tables."
The Kremlin has strongly denied previous claims that Putin suffers from cancer. However, the investigative group Proekt was told by the Central Clinical Hospital that Dr Selivanov was "on a business trip" and "it is not known when he will return." Their report also mentioned Dr Alexey Shcheglov, a surgeon with ENT training who "follows Putin so relentlessly that during public events he allegedly gets into joint photographs with the head of state." According to Proekt, Shcheglov has visited Putin most often with 59 trips over a span of 282 days.
The report noted that Shcheglov's father Nikolai Shcheglov, also a surgeon, was made an MP from the pro-Putin party United Russia last year. Shcheglov is reportedly seen as "the doctor who, among other things, can be the first to detect problems with the thyroid gland, including oncological ones." Proekt also mentioned another ENT specialist, Dr Igor Esakov, who made 38 trips to Putin encompassing 152 days. Meanwhile, the Russian leader's third most frequent medic was cancer surgeon Dr Selivanov, with 35 trips spanning 166 days.