Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek has partnered up with the World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition (WPCC) to raise global awareness of the risks and symptoms for pancreatic cancer in the form of a public service announcement.
The minute-long PSA was shared to the World Pancreatic Cancer Day website and its official YouTube page on Thursday morning.
Back in March, Trebek, 79, revealed he was battling the deadly disease in its most advanced form: Stage 4.
“In order to help patients fight and survive this disease, more attention and awareness is needed,” said the Canadian TV icon. “That’s why I joined forces with the World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition.”
“I wish I had known sooner that the persistent stomach pain I experienced prior to my diagnosis was a symptom of pancreatic cancer,” he said.
In Canada, an estimated 5,500 people were diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and 4,800 died from it in 2017, according to the Canadian Cancer Society.
“Other common symptoms can include: mid-back pain, unexplained weight loss, new onset diabetes, and the yellowing of the skin or eyes.”
Trebek encouraged people to participate in raising awareness by wearing purple throughout November and spreading the word over social media.
Since revealing his diagnosis to the public, Trebek has been very open about his struggles fighting the disease.
Back in May, he said that according to his doctors, he was in “near remission.” Though he revealed earlier this month that they have since urged him to undergo a second round of chemotherapy treatment.
Trebek’s “numbers went sky high,” within the same week he lost 12 pounds.
According to the U.S. National Cancer Institute, the five-year survival rate from 2008 to 2014 was 8.5 per cent.
While pancreatic cancer has one of the lowest survival rates of all cancers, Trebek has claimed that he’s “not afraid of dying.”
“I’m 79 years old,” he told CTV’s Lisa LaFlamme. “So, hey, I’ve lived a good life, a full life, and I’m nearing the end of that life. I know that.”
World Pancreatic Cancer Day takes place on Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019.
For additional information about the risks and symptoms of pancreatic cancer, you can visit the official WPCC website.
— With files form Kerri Breen and Katie Scott
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