Downton Abbey star Nicky Henson talks about his ongoing 18-year-long battle with cancer
Nicky has been diagnosed with two different types of cancers in the last 18 years.
In an extremely candid first-person account, Downton Abbey and EastEnders star Nicky Henson admitted that his good sense of humor has kept him going with his battle with cancer. The TV star has been battling with two different types of cancers for the last 18 years and has now decided to speak openly about his disease.
Nicky wrote in The Mirror: "I've been fighting cancer for 18 years now so it’s just part of my life. Whatever happens, happens. It’s not so much fighting it, it’s keeping a sense of humor."
The star continued, "I swim half a mile every day but I’ve always done that. I haven’t smoked for about 45 years, but I drink alcohol and I’m not going to stop having a good time. If I’m going to be here, you need to enjoy it! I consider myself a very lucky person."
It was on a Christmas day 18 years ago that Nicky found out that he had been diagnosed with gastrointestinal stromal tumors. He had surgery to remove half his colon and part of his stomach and started dating an anti-cancer drug.
However, despite the surgery and the drugs, the large tumor in Nicky’s stomach came back. He underwent another operation and surgeons removed his spleen, taking away cancer for good but meaning Nicky would have to continue taking life-saving drugs for the rest of his life.
To make things worse, eight years later, he found out he had prostate cancer. Nicky admitted to having 21 medical procedures in a year and said he’s now got a stent which needs to be replaced every five to six months.
In his account of the happenings, he credited his family, and especially his children, for helping him stay positive, as well as making sure he lives every day to the full.
Nicky said, “My three sons looked it all up on the internet and said, ‘Listen dad, it’s not like the old days – you’ll be alright’. And I have been for 18 years. I have four grandchildren who I never thought I’d see. I’m also still working, which really helps."
The Downton Abbey star added, “My wife Marguerite has been extraordinary. Aside from the fact she saved my life about four times after finding me in difficult situations, she has to deal with the day-to-day side.”
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