The Washington Post is reporting that actor Michael Douglas has a throat tumor and will undergo radiation and chemotherapy treatments. The series of treatments is expected to last eight weeks.
Michael Douglas Has Throat Tumor: Is It Cancer?
While no one has said that Douglas has cancer, in an interview with CBS News, Dr. Robert Haddad, an oncologist at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, said he believes the tumor to be advanced stage III or IV cancer.
“If Douglas’ cancer were Stage I or II, the treatment would probably be limited to radiation alone. My prediction is, based on the information released, that the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes in the neck,” Dr. Haddad said.
Smoking is one of the causes of throat cancer, along with heavy alcohol use and exposure to certain chemicals. Douglas, 65, quit smoking four years ago.
Michael Douglas Has Throat Tumor: Recovery
A spokesman for Michael Douglas told People magazine that his doctors are optimistic about the actor’s recovery from the throat tumor; they “expect him to make a full recovery.” In a statement, Douglas said, “I am very optimistic.”
Recovery, though, will likely be a long, painful road for Douglas. Many throat cancer patients endure tube feedings, severe mouth sores, weight loss, depression, hair loss and severe bloating.
Michael Douglas Has Throat Tumor: Treatment May Affect Upcoming Film
ABC News has reported the diagnosis may affect Douglas’ promotion of his upcoming movie release Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps. The film is a sequel to 1987’s Wall Street, which won Douglas a Best Actor Academy Award for his role as Gordon Gekko. It is set to hit theaters Sept. 24.
Michael Douglas Has Throat Tumor: A Rough Year
Douglas has had a difficult personal life this year. In April, his son Cameron, 31, who has been in rehab on and off since age 13, was sentenced to five years in prison on drug charges. Now comes news that Douglas has a throat tumor.
Michael Douglas Has Throat Tumor: Family Ties
Douglas and wife Catherine Zeta-Jones, 40, are currently out of the country. It is believed they are in Bermuda, where they have a home and currently raise their two children, Dylan, 10, and Carys, 7. ABC News reports that Douglas has changed his priorities as a father in recent years:
“Travel involved with making movies forced me to be away from Cameron. My priorities have completely changed. My marriage and my families come certainly before my career. I cherish the time with them. I’m picking a lot fewer projects now. It’s tough to get me out of the house.”
Michael Douglas Has Throat Tumor: Celebrity Cancer Survivors
Michael Douglas is not the only celebrity to take on the role of cancer patient. The roster of celebrities who have successfully battled cancer is ever-growing. Rod Stewart and Jack Klugman have both successfully beaten throat cancer. Sheryl Crow, Olivia Newton-John, Suzanne Sommers and Melissa Etheridge have all come back from breast cancer. Fran Drescher triumphed over uterine cancer. Perhaps Douglas will recover from his throat tumor and go on to live a cancer-free life like Christina Applegate and Lance Armstrong.
Michael Douglas Has Throat Tumor: Christina Applegate
The former Married with Children cutie, now 38 and pregnant, underwent a double mastectomy in 2008 after discovering she had breast cancer. Applegate, now in remission, told Good Morning America: “I’m going to have cute boobs till I’m 90.”
In July, Applegate announced plans to launch a cancer charity called Right Action for Women that would help women who could not afford preventative cancer care.
Michael Douglas Has Throat Tumor: Lance Armstrong
The Tour de France champion discovered his testicular cancer in 1996. Armstrong’s cancer eventually spread to his stomach, lungs and brain. Since he beat the disease, he has gone on to win seven Tour de France races. In 1997, he founded the Lance Armstrong Foundation to provide grants to institutions and organizations that fight cancer.