Doyle Brunson Recovering After Successful Surgery

Posted on March 11th, 2015 by Daniel Ryder
Doyle Brunson successful cancer surgery

Doyle Brunson is recovering after successful surgery to remove cancerous growths from his head. (Image:

Doyle Brunson has always been one of the toughest poker players around, and that applies just as much away from the table as it does on the felt.

Brunson has successfully undergone surgery to have a melanoma removed from his head, and appears to be recovering well since the surgery.

Brunson’s surgery was necessary to remove cancerous growths from his skin on the top of his head, as Brunson announced to the public early in February. Last week, Brunson, 81, told his Twitter followers that he had gotten the “all clear” and that the surgery was successful.

Brunson Is No Stranger To Surgeries

According to Brunson, this was the 12th major surgery he’s ever been through. In addition, it was the third time he had to undergo surgery to deal with melanoma alone. After the surgery, Brunson’s daughter Pamela reported that her father was in excellent spirits.

“Back home and thankful Dad made it through surgery like a trooper,” Pamela reported on Facebook. “Now he’s got a few more scars under his hat…he wanted to head home ASAP the next morning…and even offered to drive part of the way home!”

Doyle shared pictures of his scars in the aftermath of the surgery, “just in case Twitter folks think it was just a scratch,” he said. He then shared some of the downsides of recovering from the ordeal.

“My head is sore and I can’t wear a hat/cap,” Brunson tweeted. “The wounds are healing but look so bad I’m going to stay home for a few days.” Brunson finished his tweet with “$$ lost.#nopoker,” referencing the fact that he had to take some time away from the game in order to recuperate.

Texas Dolly Keeps Sense of Humor After Surgery

However, the surgery and the recovery period certainly didn’t take away Brunson’s legendary sense of humor, as he managed to make a joke at Daniel Negreanu’s expense related to the surgery.

“Found out the big incision on my head is where @RealKidPoker paid the doc to try to extract some poker knowledge from my head,” he tweeted, ending it with the hashtag #didntwork.

It’s hard to believe that anyone in poker wouldn’t be familiar with the exploits of the man known as Texas Dolly, but this seems like a great time to recap his accomplishments in poker nonetheless. Brunson won back-to-back World Series of Poker Main Event championships in 1976 and 1977, and has won a total of 10 bracelets over his illustrious career.

He is a member of the Poker Hall of Fame and the author of several poker books, including Super System, one of the most popular poker tomes of all time. Over the course of his career, Brunson has won over $6.1 million in tournament play, a number that is even more impressive considering that most of Brunson’s career took place in an era when even six-figure prizes were rare.

In more recent years, Brunson has cut back significantly on his tournament play, though he has still made many appearances at the WSOP, including in the Main Event, where he cashed most recently in 2013. He has also remained an outspoken voice in the poker community, both on topics related to the game and on other issues; earlier this year, Brunson was briefly the subject of controversy because of comments he made about Bruce Jenner’s sex change.

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