Sam Neill, Dick Vitale Discuss Cancer Diagnoses and More


As Susan Sullivan discussed her lung cancer diagnosis and the FDA discusses banning specific hair straightening products due to long-term health effects, here’s what’s happening in the oncology space this week.

Jim Peterson, current television analyst with the Minnesota Timberwolves, revealed cancer diagnosis.

Jim Peterson, former basketball player and television color analyst for the Minnesota Timberwolves, announced that he is in recovery after undergoing surgery to treat prostate cancer. He had received the diagnosis about a month ago and was treated at the Mayo Clinic last week to undergo the procedure.

“It’s not something anybody wants to have to walk through,” Petersen said to The Athletic. “But I’ve been really lucky to have just an incredible support group.”

Peterson will be focusing on healing post-surgery, while missing the preseason finale in Chicago this upcoming Thursday. Peterson plans on returning to the season on October 25th.

“I feel great. It’s a treatable form of cancer and there’s still risk. But I feel really good about it,” Petersen said. “And I’m a fast healer and I’m looking forward to getting back on my feet again and being there for the first game in Toronto.”

Peterson thanks his close friend, as he believes that things wouldn’t have worked out the way his cancer experience did.

Sam Neill, “Jurassic Park” star, Sam Neill, discussed his blood cancer diagnosis.

Sam Neill, known for his role in the “Jurassic Park” movies, said that that he is “not remotely afraid” of death, according to Fox News.

Neill went through months of chemotherapy and explained his diagnosis of angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma to the television program “Australian Story.” His doctor appeared on the show to discuss how aggressive Neill’s cancer got before he completed round one of chemotherapy. Neill refused to stop treatment altogether.

Read More: ‘Jurassic Park’ Star Announced Lymphoma Diagnosis, Martina Navratilova Is Cancer-Free and More

A new novel drug was prescribed to Neill as the next step for his treatment, and it continued to work.

"That was a year ago now," Neill noted, "and I have been in remission ever since then, and I'm immensely grateful for that. It's not something I can finish, I will be on this for the rest of my life. Every two weeks I go in and get beaten up again. It's like going 10 rounds with a boxer, but it's keeping me alive. And being alive is infinitely preferable to the alternative."

Neill has been able to work for over a year now due to the successful treatment.

ESPN college basketball broadcaster, Dick Vitale, posted an emotional video after vocal chord cancer.

Dick Vitale, 84, announced in a video on X (the platform formerly known as Twitter)that he hasn’t spoken for several months due to vocal cord cancer diagnosis.

“This is the first time I’ve been able to speak,” Vitale said in the video posted on Monday. “I’m gonna do it in moderation for the next couple weeks. I’m emotional. I’m excited. I didn’t speak, you gotta understand, for seven months. You’re the first people hearing my voice in a long, long time.”

Vitale also discussed that he will be back to work in time for the Miami and Kentucky game on Nov. 28th.

Vitale’s doctor reported that Vitale’s radiotherapy had gone “remarkably well,” and he has almost fully healed from the diagnosis.

“At this point, he can start using his voice,” Dr. Zeitels mentioned in the video. “He’ll see how long it takes to recover. We had planned to look under the microscope in the operating room, but it looks so terrific that we are going to wait on that because I see no evidence of the cancer whatsoever.”

Vitale was also treated for lymphoma before he announced vocal cord diagnosis and myeloma in 2021.

The FDA considered a ban on hair straightening products that may link to hormone-related cancers.

The Food and Drug Administration has announced that specific hair straightening products may have a connection with hormone-related cancers that can cause “long-term adverse health effects,” according to a press release from the FDA.

Formaldehyde and other formaldehyde-related chemicals, such as methylene glycol, are considering being banned by the FDA. These products could cause long term effects and release human carcinogens.

Irritation to the eyes and throat, coughing, wheezing, chest pain, chronic problems, headaches, asthma and cancer are all side effects to using these products, according to Fox Business. Alongside this, a study that was conducted released that the use of straightening prodcuts have a closer link to uterine cancer diagnoses.

"The FDA’s proposal to ban these harmful chemicals in hair straighteners and relaxers is a win for public health — especially the health of Black women who are disproportionately put at risk by these products as a result of systemic racism and anti-Black hair sentiment," said Rep. Pressley, according to Fox Business. "Regardless of how we wear our hair, we should be allowed to show up in the world without putting our health at risk.

The FDA is encouraging individuals to read the labels of ingredients within specific hair straightening products before purchasing and using them on hair.

Susan Sullivan, actress in “Castle” and “Falcon Crest,” discussed her ongoing lung cancer diagnosis.

Actress Susan Sullivan revealed the strgles of her lung cancer diagnosis, as she announced on X that she had been diagnosed with the disease and received surgery.

Sullivan, also known for her role in the NBC soap opera “Another World,” expressed her gratitude to those checking in on her.

"Thanks for all the lovely comments and concerns. I had lung cancer," the actress, stated on X. "The surgery was successful. The healing process is a struggle. Thanks, glad you’re out there!"

Sullivan, 80, also revealed a picture of her in the hospital earlier in the week saying, “Life‘s surprising little turns try to be ready for them with humor and hope. On we go.”

Sullivan can be seen wearing a mask and hospital gown, and the photo received over 400 comments from friends and fans.

One of Sullivan’s former cast mates, who started in “Falcon Crest,” Kristian Alfonso, stated under her post, “Thinking of you wishing you a speedy recovery Susan. XO.”

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