You never really know what someone is going through until they open up.
And that’s exactly what Ben Stiller did during his candid chat on Howard Stern‘s SiriusXM radio show. On Tuesday morning, the Zoolander alum told the radio personality he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer — two years ago! Whoa.
For the first time, the Tropic Thunder actor got real about his battle with the disease and how his doctors detected and treated the cancer. Hmm, go on!
“It came out of the blue for me. I had no idea. At first, I didn’t know what was gonna happen. I was scared. It just stopped everything in your life because you can’t plan for a movie because you don’t know what’s gonna happen.”
So scary. As to why he’s finally opening up about his struggle, the A-lister explained that he felt he should spread the word about getting tested. Despite having no history of prostate cancer in his family, his doctor was able to detect the cancer due to a simple blood test, called Prostate-Specific Antigen.
“If I hadn’t gotten the test, my doctor started giving it to me at 46, I still wouldn’t know. I wanted to talk about it because of the [PSA] test … I feel like the test saved my life.”
Initially, the 50-year-old wasn’t too concerned about the results from his PSA test. However, six months later, when his levels had gone up even further, the father-of-two “started to get a little worried.” After going through a series of additional tests, including a MRI and biopsy, it was determined that he did indeed have prostate cancer. As a part of his treatment, the funnyman had surgery to have his prostate removed.
Thankfully, Ben was able to turn to his famous peers who had also survived prostate cancer. As you may recall, the filmmaker’s Meet the Fockers costar Robert De Niro has been pretty vocal about his fight with the disease.
Still, Christine Taylor‘s husband stayed relatively tight lipped about the diagnosis at first. Regardless, Ben’s now hoping his experience could help others. He concluded:
“The controversy about the test is that once you get treatment for prostate cancer, things can happen: incontinence, impotence… It’s the second most deadly cancer, but it’s also one of the most survived cancers, if it’s detected early.”
Intense stuff. Not to mention, the comedian went into further detail about his health struggle in a blog post which he shared on Twitter (below).
And for those of you who are concerned about Stiller’s health, don’t fret as he gets tested every six months to make sure he’s in the “clear.” Phew!
[Image via WENN.]