Updated: Sunday, 07 Oct 2012, 3:52 PM EDT
Published : Monday, 01 Oct 2012, 9:18 AM EDT
INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano is being treated for leukemia, the Colts announced on Monday.
In a 10:30 a.m. news conference, Colts owner Jim Irsay said Pagano said he feels like he can beat the leukemia.
"He is a fighter," Irsay said.
PHOTOS | Take a look at Pagano's career
Offensive Coordinator Bruce Arians has been named the interim head coach. Arians became emotional speaking to the media on Monday. He is a cancer survivor.
"These first few days are really hard on you," Arians said. "Today's about Chuck."
Pagano was evaluated for bruising, which eventually uncovered the leukemia. His doctor spoke to the media at Pagano's request.
"He wants to deal with this challenge in a very forthright fashion," said Dr. Larry Cripe, Pagano's doctor.
Cripe said the ultimate goal is a full recovery for Pagano, but that in the next several weeks it will be a day-to-day situation with possibilities for complications. Pagano has acute promyelocytic leukemia, which is a cancer of the bone marrow. Cripe said Pagano is otherwise very healthy, and that a bone marrow transplant isn't necessary at this phase of his treatment.
The coach will be able to go home when he is feeling better and his blood counts are safe, Dr. Cripe said. He said the likelihood of Pagano achieving remission is "favorable."
TEAM FIGHTS FOR PAGANO
Colts General Manager Ryan Grigson said the fighting spirit Pagano brings to football will be applied to his medical condition.
"Chuck is a fighter," Grigson said. "The best medicine for him is for the team to continue to fight four quarters."
Pagano was named the head coach of the Colts in January , after a house cleaning of the Colts front office. It is his first head coaching position in the NFL. He previous served as defensive coordinator for the Baltimore Ravens. His former team also sent out a tweet of support for Pagano Monday.
Anyone interested in sending cards or messages to Pagano can send them to the Colts Complex, 7001 W. 56th St., Indianapolis, IN 46254. Colts officials asked that people not send flowers.
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