Alex Trebek, the long-time host of the popular game show "Jeopardy!",
announced that he was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer.
In a YouTube video
, the 78-year-old stated that he learned of his diagnosis this week and that he, “wanted to prevent you [the viewers] from reading or hearing some overblown or inaccurate reports regarding my health.”
According to the American Cancer Society, all pancreatic cancers have about a 9 percent relative five-year survival rate. That number drops to 3 percent when the cancer is stage 4, meaning that it has spread to other parts of the body. However, Trebek remains optimistic.
"Now normally, the prognosis for this is not very encouraging, but I’m going to fight this, and I’m going to keep working," he said in the video. "And with the love and support of my family and friends and with the help of your prayers also, I plan to beat the low survival rate statistics for this disease."
Trebek even joked that he needs to continue working, since his contract with "Jeopardy!"
states that he must host the show for another three years.
This is not the first major cancer-related news story to come out of the game show. In 2016, Cindy Stowell
, a 41-year-old "Jeopardy!"
contestant won $100,000 on the show. Stowell passed away from colorectal cancer but left her winnings to fund cancer research so that others may not share her fate.
In an interview with CURE
, pancreatic cancer expert Daniel M. Labow, M.D., chief of the Surgical Oncology Division at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, mentioned that the only treatment option for stage 4 pancreatic cancer is chemotherapy, and how well an individual tolerates treatment could have huge implications for their outcomes.
“First of all, I think he looks pretty good. It doesn’t look like he’s already lost weight and have this taken over his body, which means he should be able to tolerate treatment,” Labow said. “I think his philosophy is a good one – to be aggressive and fight this as hard as he can. Of course, only time will tell.”
This article originally appeared on Oncology Nursing News
, as “Alex Trebek Diagnosed With Stage IV Pancreatic Cancer.