Chronology: Hugo Chavez's battle for health

Fri Dec 7, 2012 2:05pm EST

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(Reuters) - Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez returned from Cuba on Friday after medical treatment in a first public appearance for three weeks that quashed rumors he may have been at death's door.

Following is a chronology of the 58-year-old socialist leader's battle with illness:

30 JUNE 2011

* A pale-looking Chavez addresses the nation by television from Cuba, where he says doctors operated on him to remove a cancerous tumor from his pelvis.

4 JULY 2011

* The president makes a surprise return to Venezuela ahead of the country's Independence Day celebrations.

17 JULY 2011

* Chavez returns to Cuba to begin a course of chemotherapy.

22 SEPTEMBER 2011

* Finishes his fourth and final course of chemotherapy.

20 OCTOBER 2011

* Following tests in Havana, Chavez declares himself free from his cancer, and his doctors say he is completely cured.

2 DECEMBER 2011

* Hosts a regional summit, minus representatives from the United States, in Caracas.

20 DECEMBER 2011

* Attends a Mercosur summit in Uruguay, Chavez's first political trip overseas since his illness was diagnosed.

21 FEBRUARY 2012

* Chavez says he will undergo another operation after a lesion was found in the same area where he had the tumor.

28 FEBRUARY 2012

* The president undergoes surgery in Cuba.

4 MARCH 2012

* Chavez says he will undergo radiation treatment in Cuba.

16 MARCH 2012

* President returns to Venezuela after his latest operation.

25 MARCH 2012

* Chavez returns to Havana to begin his first cycle of radiation therapy.

5 APRIL 2012

* President cries during Roman Catholic Mass, calls on God "not to take him yet" because he has more to do for Venezuela.

14 APRIL 2012

* Chavez returns to Cuba for more radiation treatment, missing the Summit of the Americas in Colombia.

7 OCTOBER 2012

* Chavez wins re-election at presidential poll.

27 NOVEMBER 2012

* The president says he will return to Cuba for treatment including hyperbaric oxygenation, which can be used to treat the side effects of radiation therapy.

7 DECEMBER 2012

* Flies home to Venezuela in the pre-dawn hours, joking "Where's the party?"

(Reporting by Caracas newsroom; Editing by Doina Chiacu)

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