By Sara Bondell - March 07, 2019
Longtime “Jeopardy!” host Alex Trebek revealed he has been diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer.
The 78-year-old posted a video to YouTube saying he is one of the 50,000 people who are diagnosed with the deadly disease each year.
“Now, normally the prognosis for this is not very encouraging, but I am going to fight this, and I am 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 rates statistics for the disease.”
Dr. Richard Kim, a medical oncologist in the Gastrointestinal Oncology Program at Moffitt Cancer Center, says the average survival rate for patients diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer is less than one year. “The only way to cure the cancer is by surgery, but only 20 percent of patients with pancreatic cancer are eligible for surgery,” he said.
Kim says most pancreatic cancer patients don’t have symptoms until the disease is advanced, but some signs include abdominal pain, weight loss, feeling full and yellowing of the eyes.
Trebek has hosted “Jeopardy!” since 1984. He says he plans to keep working while undergoing treatment, joking that he has to recover in order to fulfill his hosting duties.
“Truth told, I have to!” he said in the video. “Because under the terms of my contract, I have to host ‘Jeopardy!’ for three more years. So, help me. Keep the faith and we’ll win. We’ll get it done. Thank you.”