September 1st, 2010
06:23 PM ET

Douglas: I have stage 4 cancer

Actor Michael Douglas revealed he is suffering from stage 4 throat cancer in an appearance on "The Late Show with David Letterman" Tuesday night.

Douglas, who has not released any details of his cancer since the initial announcement last month – said he has a tumor at the base of his tongue, and has just completed his first week of radiation and chemotherapy treatments. He also told Letterman that while the cancer has spread to his lymph nodes, it has not spread below his neck.

"This is probably considered stage 4A because it hasn't spread below the neck," said Dr. Nader Sadeghi,  director of Head and Neck Surgery at the George Washington University Hospital, who is not involved in Douglas' treatment.

Sadeghi went on to say that the five-year survival rates for this type of cancer can vary greatly, depending on the size of the tumor, and the number of lymph nodes involved. It may have been caused by smoking and drinking alcohol, the doctor said.  Those are habits Douglas has acknowledged.

The actor told Letterman that early this summer, he underwent a battery of tests to determine the cause of a persistent sore throat, but the tests were inconclusive. It was only when his physician actually saw the tumor in early August that the cause of his sore throat was identified.

He told People magazine that his treatment "knocks you out."

Persistent sore throat is the most common symptom of throat cancer, says  Sadeghi. According to the American Cancer Society, more than 35,000 cases of oral cancers are diagnosed each year.

soundoff (99 Responses)
  1. Rog

    Jim & Kris: Wow such intelligent commentary from the left, someone says something you disagree with and you tell the person to ram their head into something or you just call them a tea bagger.

    September 1, 2010 at 20:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Kris

      Change that to "Something blatantly ignorant, wrong, and untrue"...why do people like you defend people like her, exactly? So that when you tell a lie it won't seem like such a big deal?

      September 2, 2010 at 06:30 | Report abuse |
    • sheppard

      Unlike the always soft-spoken, compassionate right/wrong wing... hypocrite.

      September 2, 2010 at 15:35 | Report abuse |
  2. jan

    I was greatly saddened to hear about Michael Douglas. I've been a huge fan of his for many many years, and hope that he can make a full recovery despite the odds. However, I was surprised and disgusted to hear that his young wife Catherine is off in Bermuda splashing around in the ocean while Michael is going through terrible journey. I think it's despicable, in poor taste and certainly says volumes about her character. I don't even know Mr. Douglas – but I would be there in a heartbeat if he was my husband or even my friend to help him and support him through this difficult time in his life. .. I always felt she married him to further her career – and her actions today seem to affirm this image. Shame on her.

    I wish Mr. Douglas the best and hope that he can make "Wall Street 3." (Wall Street is one of my all-time favorite films, and can't wait to see Wall Street 2 when it opens).

    September 1, 2010 at 20:14 | Report abuse | Reply
    • tina

      i thought the same thing,,,,,and I watched an interview with him where he said he INSISTED his family go on vacation without him.Still kinda sad,,,but he said he wanted the children to enjoy what was left of summer,,and didn't want anyone around him while he was feeling ill.I wish him the best also,,,I was very saddened to hear of his upcoming fight ,,,but let's hope he comes out on top (my auntie fought and survived throat cancer!!)

      September 1, 2010 at 21:56 | Report abuse |
    • teresa, oh

      i think yer being a bit harsh on his wife. She probably WAS following his orders. When I am ill, I prefer to be alone and dont like anyone hovering over me asking "how are you feeling"... hey, if i was feeling GOOD, i would be up and about. Life goes on, the kids and wife went on vacation before the rigors of school starts. Her career was fine before Michael. If anything -marrying him might have put a damper on her roles.

      September 1, 2010 at 22:11 | Report abuse |
    • Cancer Survivor

      They live in Bermuda and have lived there for many years. Would you want your young kids to see you go through treatment? Think before you judge people you don't even know.

      September 2, 2010 at 09:02 | Report abuse |
    • jeremy

      Wall Street 2 was a good movie. Michael Douglas makes good movies; well-acted and realistic. I think they reflect his own personal life psychologically and how his personal energy and style related to the world in various stages of his life. His lesser-known movie "Solitary Man" is another good take on this, showing a more fallen man in this case.

      December 23, 2010 at 16:40 | Report abuse |
  3. Monty Miller

    I agree with Kris, the new health care rules have nothing, nada, nicht, to do with your family member's cancer or Michael Douglas' cancer. To say any different is pure IGNORANCE!

    September 1, 2010 at 20:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Jeepers

    I believe that what Obama supports is not putting very, very old people through aggressive treatments when their chances of recovery aren't great anyway. It often takes away from the quality of what little life they have left. It's my understanding that he's in support of doctors having serious sit-downs with people and their families about letting go gracefully. People often want to keep fighting no matter what and sometimes that's just wasteful...of both quality time and money...which Medicare often pays for...taxpayers.

    September 1, 2010 at 20:31 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Cancer Survivor

      Speaking to people about a Living Will is nothing new. It has been on health insurance policies for years. Most people don't seem to understand, know or even care to learn about their own policies.

      September 1, 2010 at 20:39 | Report abuse |
    • Cuadrose

      The new healthcare plan doesn't deny the elderly long term treatment, doesn't deny treatment based on age or illness. You guys have bought the propaganda of those who don't think every American should have healthcare. How sad! The are no death panels. End of life care has for many years been discussed with those with terminal illness. Honoring the wishes of the patient is what it means to discuss with the patient what it is that they want, not what we who don't want to let them go want. The current system denies healthcare to people of any age if they have pre-existing conditions. Where is your moral outrage about that. Those of you who complain about medicare and social security have family members and friends who benefit from this, they've paid into this and ought to able to count on it . Are you going to pay for all their needs if these things were to be taken away? I wish Mr. Douglas a full recovery. I am sure that he is very grateful to be able to have and afford the healthcare he is able to receive. If he weren't able to afford it, I am sure that he would be an advocate for the healthcare plan. Support the new healthcare plan as you may one day need and wish you had. Life is impermanent, your life could change in a moment, your health report could give you news you never thought you hear in your lifetime, how would you handle if you had no healthcare? Or if you were denied healthcare or could fully afford it, what would you do?

      September 1, 2010 at 21:40 | Report abuse |
    • Not drinking the Kool-Aid

      When you have a family memeber denied certain perscriptions or certain procedures purely onthe basis of age, and they are told so, then you can sell me this part of the discussion. Clearly you have not personally been affected and are still drinking the kool-aid.

      September 2, 2010 at 08:00 | Report abuse |
    • tim

      @Not drinking the Kool-Aid – My Dad recently succumbed to lung cancer. He was in Hospice, and was there because that's what he wanted, so he wasn't seeking treatment for the Cancer. But, when he fell and broke his hip all of the medical advice was that, given his condition, he would be unlikley to survive the hip repair operation (concern was general anesthesia risk). Even without breaking his hip it was obvious that he was in the final few weeks of his life. He was stubborn, and wanted the hip repaired. Against all advice, including mine, they did the procedure – he was not denied a costly and risky procedure, and it was his choice. He surprised us all by surviving the procedure. Medicare has taken care of nearly everything – at an enormous cost. He died of heart failure 10 days later, but he didn't die in pain. So I have been personally affected, however my experience is quite different from yours I think. And I'm not drinking Kool-Aid.

      September 2, 2010 at 09:31 | Report abuse |
  5. Cancer Survivor

    @ Name calling is ridiculous and immature. Doctors were practicing before Obama and if they missed a diagnosis, it had nothing to do with any president. @ Islander, what is this WE crap? "We have a reduced ability to deal with this problem" WHAT? Doctors suddenly became less informed and educated? That is a doctor's diagnosis, not a political agenda. @ fay: If a doctor tells a patient they have a spot on their lungs, it is the initiative of the patient to follow through as well, it is their body. What is this miracle drug that the government has prohibited use of?

    September 1, 2010 at 20:37 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Cancer Survivor

      That @ was for everyone calling others names like a schoolyard bulling.

      September 1, 2010 at 20:40 | Report abuse |
  6. Christine

    This is very sad news about Michael Douglas's medical condition. I do not understand the attitude of his wife to leave him for eight weeks because she can't stand the sight of seeing him in treatment. Whatever happened to the marriage vows "in sickness and in health"? If this occurred in the life of any other non-celebrity married couple, this woman's behavior would be called inexplicable.

    September 1, 2010 at 20:39 | Report abuse | Reply
    • sheppard

      and YOU would be called self-righteous and judgmental. You know nothing about these folks, what their plans may have already been for the childrens' summer – he may not have wanted then to see him going through treatment – he may not want his wife to see him going through treatment .... all kind of things, but YOU have to immediately go for the most negative. YOU madam are a loser. Get a life.

      September 2, 2010 at 14:57 | Report abuse |
    • Leah (TXanimal)

      Personally, I would think it selfish to expect my family watch me suffer through a horrific treatment. I've watched 2 family members suffer through chemo, radiation, experimental treatments, etc., and eventually die...and the rest of the family imploded because of the stress of "being there". NO WAY would I want my loved ones to go through that.

      September 2, 2010 at 15:56 | Report abuse |
  7. Jean

    So sad that Michael Douglas has cancer. I was once told by an oral surgeon that the only way you get mouth or throat/oral cancer is by chewing tobacco. I can't picture Michael Douglas doing that, for some reason.
    Not sure why everyone wants to call people names & insult them for their opinions/beliefs. This is America people – let people say what they want. You don't have to agree with it!

    September 1, 2010 at 20:43 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Cancer Survivor

      I agree Jean. It's a sad commentary. It's also sad to hear when anyone has cancer.

      September 1, 2010 at 20:44 | Report abuse |
    • Mamatiggerof2


      I can tell you that in this case the doctor who told you the only way you can get mouth/throat cancer is by chewing tobacco was seriously misinformed. My bro-n-law had throat cancer the type that is usually a smoker's cancer, but he has never smoked or chewed a day in his life. Luckily with treatment he was able to beat the cancer. Also my step grandpa had mouth cancer, and he smoked a pipe he did not chew, unfortunately he was not able to beat the cancer. I guess my whole point is that anyone can get mouth/throat cancer and by that doctor saying the only way to get it is by chewing tobacco he was misinforming his patients and doing them disservice. I wish Michael Douglas the best of luck and that he is able to beat this. I also truely hope that his wife and kids went on vacation without him because they were following his wishes and not because she didn't want to deal with it.

      September 2, 2010 at 00:38 | Report abuse |
    • mtngrrll

      You are sadly misinformed if you were told that the only way to get tongue/throat cancer was by using chewing tobacco. Having worked for over 20 years with a Death & Dying Program, almost 99% of those with tongue and/or throat cancer smoked cigars, which Michael Douglas has been seen to be doing on a regular basis for years.

      September 2, 2010 at 01:48 | Report abuse |
    • Liz

      Jean – find a new oral surgeon. What he told you was completely false. Hard to believe someone in healthcare could be so mis-informed.

      September 2, 2010 at 11:28 | Report abuse |
  8. the doctor

    fay, please explain what drug and what limitation you are citing:
    "Hope that Mr Douglas Will beable to use the new drug that they Government has stop Dr's from using."
    I am not aware of any actual government limits nor any drug that would specifically work in this case, but I see these specious arguments from time to time and challenge them as they are typically misinformation being exploited by other groups that end up inhibiting people from taking proper action to save their own lives.

    September 1, 2010 at 20:46 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Cancer Survivor

      Maybe you need to ask Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh or anyone on Fox News what drug that is.

      September 1, 2010 at 20:48 | Report abuse |
    • Dr Perry Fisher

      You are Not a doctor,the commentator above is correct in his statement.Such an arrogant nitwit

      September 1, 2010 at 22:36 | Report abuse |
  9. kleenmary

    Dear Mr Douglas, You may already know these things but you also may not...fact #1 a cancer cell has about 22 times the receptors for sugar than a normal cell...so stop all sugars in all forms...the plant Stevia is an alternative....fact #2 cancer thrives in an acidic ph...so cut out all white foods...pastas, breads,and all meats and dairy. eat lots of leafy greens...juice them actually so you get massive amounts of raw greens and your body ph will turn alkaline....which cancer hates. Look into going raw pretty please because you can live though this. You just have to know how to piss cancer cells off enough to have them leave...I am sending you healthy wishes.You can live through this.
    I am a very big fan since way back in the Streets of San Francisco days.
    Kathleen Mary

    September 1, 2010 at 21:09 | Report abuse | Reply
    • sweet tea

      is there any resource or website that you could recommend? my father was just diagnosed with cancer & i would love to know more about your suggestions. thank you so much. =)

      September 1, 2010 at 21:59 | Report abuse |
    • tina

      awesome advice Kleenmary,,,,does this apply to all cancers??and if so,,,,can you ever return to a decadent diet,,lol . I have more than 5 years in,,,,but i never feel safe.

      September 1, 2010 at 22:00 | Report abuse |
  10. tom

    your an idiot

    September 1, 2010 at 21:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Person

    It amazes me that no matter what the subject of any particular article, the comments displayed ALWAYS devolve into some type of political polemic or some type of party bashing idiocy. Is there anything in this world that is not the fault of either the Rupublicans or the Democrats?

    September 1, 2010 at 21:41 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Lucie

      I agree with you on this. This happens on every board you post on....it's actually an EPIDEMIC. Some folks just can't or won't stay on topic. I wish Michael Douglas a full recovery, this coming from a 13+ year cancer survivor. He can and will beat this. As to the comment re: where is his wife, he mentioned on Letterman that she was at their vacation home and seemed OK with it. I trust that he is getting excellent care and his wife and kids are winding down the summer in their way. It seems to work for them.

      September 1, 2010 at 23:32 | Report abuse |
  12. Walter

    Talk about ignorant. You don't "construct the english language", you construct a sentence using the english language. For future reference, when you lambast someone for their perceived lack of knowledge of the english language, make sure you don't negate your comment by being just as incorrect.

    September 1, 2010 at 21:52 | Report abuse | Reply
    • tina

      Amen to that!!!!LOL

      September 1, 2010 at 22:00 | Report abuse |
  13. Andacar

    Congratulations Fay, you win tonight's coveted "blame Obama for EVERYTHING" award!

    September 1, 2010 at 22:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. teresa, oh

    smart and pretty... how Do you Do it?

    September 1, 2010 at 22:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Person

    My epeen feels bigger.

    September 1, 2010 at 22:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Diane

    Fay, I do sympathise with the person you have described. Ideally, nobody should have cancer, or AIDS or Alzheimer's, or any number of rotten things that go wrong. But, when they do, we rely on our doctors to be thorough and knowledgable enough to find out what is wrong quickly to start treatment. There are cases, though, where signs or symptoms do not manifest themselves right away, or they start quietly and the patient themselves ignores them for too long before seeking treatment. It is up to the doctors to listen to their patients, but it is also up to the patients to listen to the doctors.

    It may be that on the first visit, the doctors did miss the spot, however I am sure they would have advised the patient to come back in X weeks/months for further testing. The patient themselves is their own and best advocate in regards to their own care. If the doctors do not listen to what you as the patient are telling them, then find another doctor. Likewise, it is up to the patients to listen to what the doctors are telling us and to follow through with their instructions and recommendations. This has absolutely no relationship with whomever happens to be residing in The White House at the time.

    September 1, 2010 at 22:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. David Anderson

    How completely disgusting. You jump on Mr. Douglas' horribly unfortunate situation to promote an Obama-bashing agenda. One has nothing to do with the other and this takes some serious gall. Opportunistic, ignorant, and sad.

    September 1, 2010 at 22:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Dr Perry Fisher

    Lets hope that he is in good hands

    September 1, 2010 at 22:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. James

    I think some of you missed the whole point. Mr. Douglas doesn't need Mr. Obama's Health Care Plan. He is rich and can well afford the best doctors on the planet. So, any reference to the Health Bill causing Mr. Douglas cancer getting worst is not valid.

    September 1, 2010 at 22:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Thomas H

    It's hard to see the connection between Mr. Douglas' condition with President Obama's health care reforms since THEY HAVEN'T GONE INTO EFFECT YET!!

    September 1, 2010 at 22:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Sentinal2012

    Whatever Michael Douglas spends on himself, in order to save his life, I am sure, will benefit some person or some child in the future. He can't take his money with him. If he survives, I am sure they will throw another movie at him, in order to see Lazarus come back to life. He may have to come back as a mime. He employs a lot of people even on a bad day. 65 is young to be going through this, especially the scrutiny of every word or move.

    September 1, 2010 at 23:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Bob

    Maybe he could make a commercial before he dies for Young Americans warning them against tobacco and Alcohol use.. it would be great to see a Hollywood actor use his illness to help others , esp young people..

    September 1, 2010 at 23:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. Lucie

    Another self serving ignorant post again blaming Obama, whose healthcare program has not gone into effect. Keep up this mindless bashing and you will see what happens at the polls next year. It's ignoramuses like you that will get Obama his next term. Suck it up.

    September 1, 2010 at 23:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. rubi

    fay - that's a bit sad, however, the patient is also not without fault - she waited a couple years to be re-seen? also, there is no stage 5 cancer - there are 5 stages 0-4 - but stage 4 is metastatic cancer which is what the person u know has.

    Case in point, my husband just finished his 6 months chemo for genetic colon cancer just a couple of months ago and he will be under yearly surveillance for the rest of his life (which hopefully is very long)....

    the #1 rule is: NOBOBY knows your body better than you - if something seems wrong, dont give up trying to get someone to listen to you about it.

    September 1, 2010 at 23:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. jason

    He can certainly afford the best care. Most people wind up unable to work, lose their job then insurance, and die. That is if they aren't underemployed in a contract temp job with no benefits like 60% of the country. No doubt his children will inherit his profession.

    September 2, 2010 at 00:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. A real Doctor

    Cancer has only 4 stages. So there is NO stage 5. Doctors didn't miss his cancer, he had appropriate tests and it was unfortunately undetected until it progressed. However, in this day in age he knew of the risks of tobacco smoking and alcohol consumption, so a certain degree of personal responsibility must be claimed. Hopefully he does well with his treatment.

    September 2, 2010 at 00:22 | Report abuse | Reply
    • annica

      If you are a real doctor, reply to my comment I made on Sept. 5, an answere would be appriciated.

      September 6, 2010 at 21:36 | Report abuse |
  27. another me

    Throat cancer can also be caused by HPV. I wish him a speedy and complete recovery!

    September 2, 2010 at 00:27 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Another CA Survivor

      You are so right! HPV now causes >50% of all head & neck cancers in men. Yup. AND HPV can be spread via saliva (ie 'wet kisses', sharing a straw, etc). Gardasil can prevent the spread of HPV, and thus millions of cases of cancer!!! Share this info with those you love. The treatment Mr. Douglas is going through (radiation and chemo) can be hell on earth. I know. I lived it. Wishing him healing karma.

      September 3, 2010 at 11:43 | Report abuse |
  28. ron

    This is a particularly nasty disease. You wind up a skeleton hooked to a feeding tube connected directly to your stomach because your throat is destroyed. It killed my father. Please don't smoke and only drink occasionally.

    September 2, 2010 at 00:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Tim Mcmillen

    FAY U DUMB ASS. I am sorry for your friend it was W's fault fault he was too busy looking for WMDS. Now how stupid does this sound?

    September 2, 2010 at 01:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. Real RN

    Had an Uncle with throat cancer; couldn't get it all in radical surgery but it took 10 years for it to metastasize to bone, brain & for him to pass. Very sad; wouldn't wish this type of cancer on my worst enemy much less a loving family member. Had friend with tongue cancer; took a while for it to kill but it sure did & not in a pleasant way. Both smoked though, "back in the day" – Pall Malls, & other brands that weren't filtered, carried no warnings, & as warriors in WWII it was the thing to do: "smoke'em if you got'em". How much luckier we are today that we know the effects of smoking, etc, and unlike "back in the day" when a cancer diagnosis was a death sentence.

    September 2, 2010 at 01:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. Lupus Will Not Win

    To Fay and others: # 1 Mr. Douglas, I truly hope that you get better soon, being sick especially with cancer can sometimes seem impossible (trust, I have lived with Lupus for almost 10 years and I am only 23) but keep only positive thoughts in your head. It is surprising how much that helps as does guided meditation.

    Now Fay, I am not sure where you get your news, but the new Healthcare Bill does not go into affect until Jan of 2011, so calm down. Next, as a recent graduate from a prestigious college, I am now without health insurance and unfortunately, I have Lupus. Now, it is my understanding that the new bill is going to be focusing also on talking more about end of life care and making sure decisions are made with patients and their doctors to ensure patients are well taken care of. In addition, this bill will allow people like myself (which there are many of us, I know you would have no idea about this, because you have probably lived a wonderful and healthy life) how have "pre-existing' conditions to find insurance. Please think about this, if you were to become ill (which I wish on no one, because I know what it means to be sick) and you lost your job because of it, how would you pay for your medical bills? Because at this time in this place many like to believe is infallible, there are millions of people who, like me, can not get the medical attention we need because somehow we are responsible for the illness that has befallen us. If you should be upset about anything, perhaps you should consider this simply injustice that has surpassed so many administrations.

    As for your family member, I hope that they make it through this tough time, but I wonder if you have spoken with this person about their condition and asked them about the true chronology of events. And you may also want to ask them about their medical insurance and the costs they are incurring while you sit here and bash doctors and a president that is trying to help those that are suffering. You can take a horse to a lake to drink water, but you can't make the horse drink . . . if you tell a patient they have a spot or any abnormality, all a doctor can do is recommend that you come back in for testing, and waiting years to see a doctor is a mistake. Thank you for your time.

    September 2, 2010 at 01:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. Real RN

    By the way, the Douglas' live in Bermuda – they aren't "vacationing" there, it's their home. Douglas not only underwent cancer treatment in the States, but is doing the Domestic promotional marketing tour for his current film & is said to be foregoing the International tour in order to continue his chemo/radiation. So, he's fulfilling his contractual obligations & is being as upbeat as he can, which helps him keep going. After first undergoing diagnostic tests that didn't detect the cancer in the early summer, he took his family on 2 vacations (Russia, & someplace else), & upon his return he was still having symptoms & got it checked out again, & got the bad news on Aug 16th apparently. Catherine Zeta-Jones is supposedly furious that his early summer diagnostic tests didn't reveal the cancer & is saying that doctors failed to diagnosis it. So, ease up on the criticism of her.

    September 2, 2010 at 01:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. tsmith

    I join in with the others who have responded to wish Mr. Douglas well. He is literally in a fight for his life and I can only hope he is spared the ravages of this disease. The radiation treatment alone may cause him long term issues because it is not uncommon for radiation, when used to treat throat cancer to "kill" the patient's salivary glands as well as the tumor. Let's all hope for a successful treatment and full remission. Surely we can all agree on at least that point.

    September 2, 2010 at 01:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. Tracy in hawkesbury

    SO SORRY Michael (Douglas) to hear of the BIG "C" word, I really hope all turns out for you, it will be a rough ride but its for the best! I really praying for you!

    AS for you all if he decides that he wants and INSISTS that his family go on vacation it's HIS decision! I would say the exact same thing! The man has a right to make his own decisions..........i would have done/said the same thing!! LET"S all pray all goes well........he is a very good actor! HUGGS TO YOU MICHAEL AND YOUR FAMILY! AMEN!

    September 2, 2010 at 06:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. DieAlready

    Die already. Who gives a crap. All this clown did was ride Daddy's coat tails to play sociopaths. What a contribution to society. Panzy. Trust fund baby. Die Already. Who cares. Your wife will be far better off (and far more fulfilled as a woman) when she's with a real man. That is my opinion.

    September 2, 2010 at 08:47 | Report abuse | Reply
    • sheppard

      How fortunate that no one gives a rat's a$$ about your opinion, you loser.

      September 2, 2010 at 15:33 | Report abuse |
    • Leah (TXanimal)

      Feel better?

      September 2, 2010 at 15:58 | Report abuse |
  36. David Cook

    I am a 5-year survivor of Stage 4 non-Hodgkins lymphoma in the head, sinus cavities, jaw, throat and neck. My tumor was between the dura and the skull. Radiation and chemotherapy knocked me out exactly as it is doing Michael Douglas. My most recent P. E. T. scan was cancer free, and I am not taking any meds for prevention of return. I never smoked, but drank at least as much as Michael. I blame the occurrence of the lymphoma on Lipitor, but it can't be proven medically. Lymphoma and liver function are related, and Lipitor (all statins) directly affects liver function. Hang in there, Michael, take care of your teeth and gums, radiation is murder on them!

    September 2, 2010 at 08:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. T

    I know how his family is going thru. My husband was diagnosed with cancer stage 4. It was hard on my kids to see their father go through this harsh ordeal. It was good that Michael had let his wife and children enjoy their vacation. They don't need to see him suffer. Catherine is a good actress even way before she married Michael. Hang in there!!!!!

    September 2, 2010 at 09:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Candice

    This is very sad. My heart goes out to him and his family.

    September 2, 2010 at 11:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Liz

    Stage 4 cancer anywhere in your body is a sad diagnosis. I am so so sorry to know this about the fabulous Michael Douglas. Having already spread to his lymph nodes is an added worry. And the fact that it is so high up in his body is scarey. If it metastasizes, it will travel up. I'm puzzled why they had trouble finding the problem when he was first examined. Didn't they do any scans or x-rays? No blood work? Hard to believe there was no physical evidence then, but only months later it was discovered at stage 4.

    September 2, 2010 at 11:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. Truth

    Chemo (for lack of a better word) is good.
    Chemo works.
    Chemo clarifies, it cuts through, and captures the evolutionary spirit.
    Chemo, in all of its forms, for life, for recovery, for healing, has marked the upward surge of remission, and
    Chemo, will not only save Teldar Paper, but also that other malfunctioning actor known as Michael Douglas.Tu Stultus Es

    September 2, 2010 at 13:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Ghod Smith

    Follow the exposure of oil as the root cause of cancer on Twitter at:


    Help get the message out and RePost and reTweet this.

    September 2, 2010 at 23:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. Another CA Survivor

    Having Stage 4 Head & Neck CA is a bad diagnosis, no matter what the etiology. But if Mr. Douglas' cancer is caused by HPV (which now causes >50% of all H & N CA in men), it is more responsive to treatment (radiation and chemo) than if caused by smoking/drinking/chewing. The treatment is miserable, but I wish him well during and after this journey. I've been there (HPV mediated CA of the tonsil, almost 4 yr survival), and now strongly support factual education for everyone re: HPV transmission (simple as sharing saliva) and PREVENTION!

    September 3, 2010 at 11:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. Paul Vosbikian

    Ble Horseshoe loves Michael Douglas, do not count him out.

    September 3, 2010 at 18:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. Paul Vosbikian

    He will comeback and Greed is good.

    September 3, 2010 at 18:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Turtle Ginsberg

    GREED is very good.

    We all Love Mickey D.

    September 4, 2010 at 15:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. Turtle Waddington Jr.

    Bluehorseshoe loves Michael Douglas

    September 4, 2010 at 15:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Annica

    How does any one get throat cancer,? chewing tobacco? drinking a bottel of Gin a day,? 3 packs of smokes?Our coal minors get black lung, ect. ... I ve been in the hair salon business for 38 yrs, I and the rest of the stylist inhaile what now are improved , toxic fumes, Like hair sprays, colors/containing amonia, Perment wave solutions, also fumed with amonia, and some if not most salons have NO, NO ventilation. Although , OSHA should check into this more efficantly. I come home , coughing constantly , and yes my Dr. says there is nothing. P.S . I dont smoke.Our invierment could be some of the blaime. --- What do you guys think.?

    September 5, 2010 at 21:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. Ron

    My wife has had patients with this same diagnosis that she has cured without burning them up with chemo and radiation. Sad that the world thinks there is only one way to treat. But, think about it, try to tell someone you can cure cancer and they look at you like you have a third eye. We are trying to get through to the right people to offer our help to Mr. Douglas. It is not too late.

    September 7, 2010 at 08:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. Roberta Smith

    I have been a fan of Michael Douglas since I saw the movie "When Michael Calls". I was a teenager then – I am 50 now. He is an extremely talented actor and I wish him well. Throat cancer must be very painful. My husband was diagnosed with stage 4 bladder cancer two years ago. They removed his bladder and he had about twenty chemotherapy treatments. They were awful. He was seriously ill afterwards and swore he wouldnt go to the next treatment. He is happy and healthy today. I pray that Michael Douglas has the same great results. You never know what medicine (and prayer) can do.

    December 23, 2010 at 03:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. Rosie Brag

    I recently came across your blog and have been reading your post "Tongue Cancer" and it is a very great post with many good points to be noted. Thank you for sharing very good post. I enjoyed it.

    March 7, 2011 at 01:39 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.