Alex Trebek had some encouraging news to share about his pancreatic cancer battle on Monday’s Good Morning America, stating that he “expects to be around” to celebrate two full years of surviving the disease.
“My doctor has told me that he is counting on me celebrating two years of survivorship past the diagnosis of Stage 4 pancreatic cancer, and that two years happens in February,” the Jeopardy! host shared in an interview supporting his upcoming memoir. “So I expect to be around — because he said I will be around — and I expect to be hosting the show if I am around.”
Trebek is currently undergoing experimental immunotherapy treatment, which he said has been “paying off” in a recent video message to fans. While speaking with GMA‘s T.J. Holmes, Trebek offered a few more specifics about the treatment’s effects, including his reassuring blood work.
“They do a blood test to see what my CA 19 numbers are, and the CA 19 numbers are an indicator of how your pancreatic cancer is progressing,” Trebek explained. “Eight weeks ago, the numbers were at about 3,500. Now, they’re below 100. So I’m going in the right direction. The doctors have said they have never seen a chart like mine because there are peaks… They usually see it going up [steadily]. I’m a bit of an anomaly.”
But if the immunotherapy ultimately proves unsuccessful, Trebek said he won’t “go to any extraordinary measures to ensure my survival.”
“I’ll just continue with chemo and see what happens,” he shared. “If the quality of life is not there, it’s hard sometimes to push and just say, ‘Well, I’m going to keep going, even though I’m miserable.’”
After Holmes joked that Trebek had “buried the lede” about his “phenomenal” treatment results, Trebek remained only cautiously optimistic about his numbers: “I’m on the right track. As I mentioned earlier, there are good days and there are bad days. I take into account the bad days.”
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