Belfast Telegraph

Actor and comedian Stephen Fry diagnosed with prostate cancer

Actor and comedian Stephen Fry has announced he has been diagnosed with prostate cancer.

The TV presenter, 60, said he underwent surgery in January to have the prostate removed and that "it all seemed to go pretty well".

The QI host posted on Twitter on Friday: "For the last two months I've been in the throes of a rather unwelcome and unexpected adventure. 

"I'm sorry I haven't felt able to talk about it till now, but here I am explaining what has been going on."

He included a link to a video where he went into more detail about his diagnosis and treatment:

In the video, he said it was "all very personal and undignified so I might as well bite the bullet", before explaining that he had seen his doctor in December in order to get a flu jab.

But it was later discovered that he had cancer, and that he had the prostate removed the following month.

He said: "They took the prostate out, they took 11 lymph nodes out, the various bits that were taken out were examined and it turned out I had a Gleason Score of nine after considering 10 is the maximum, it was clearly an aggressive little bugger."

Fry, who pulled out of presenting the Bafta Film Awards this year after more than a decade, said that people have "probably been wondering why I've been out of the public eye".

He added: "But I've been keeping my head down as much as possible because you want to get better without strangers sending you cards and letters.

"It's a bit of a business having an operation like that, there are five holes punctured into you, it's like being stabbed five times... to the body it's the same traumatic effect."

Fry paid tribute to his family and husband Elliott Spencer, saying: "My family and my divine and darling husband, of course, were just marvellous and those few friends who have known have been very discreet and kind about it."

He added: "Cancer - that is a word that rings in your head . Cancer, I've got cancer. I went around saying to myself 'I've got cancer', and 'good heavens Stephen, you're not the sort of person who gets cancer.'

"I know it's an old cliche but you don't think it's going to happen to you, cancer is is something that happens to other people.

"As far as we know it's all been got."

He continued: "For the moment I'm fit and well and happy."

"It wasn't a fight, I just submitted and let the surgeon (get on with it).

"I generally felt my life was saved by this early intervention, so I would urge any of you men of a certain age to get your PSA levels checked.

"I can't tell you how fortunate I am. Yes, I did go private. I am insured, my union the Screen Actors Guild insures me in America and I'm insured over here.

"Here's hoping I can get another few years left on this planet because I enjoy life at the moment and that is a marvellous thing to be able to say, and I would rather it didn't go away."

Prostate Cancer UK has thanked Stephen Fry for "speaking about his personal experience", because "awareness like this is so important".

Angela Culhane, chief executive at Prostate Cancer UK, said in a statement: "Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men. There are over 47,000 men in the UK who, like Stephen Fry, are diagnosed with prostate cancer every year. However, despite the numbers it's a disease that, due to its nature, is often swept under the carpet.

"We salute Stephen for his courage in speaking out about his personal experience and wish him all the very best for his recovery.

"As Stephen says, one in eight men will get prostate cancer in their lifetime, and it's now the third biggest cancer killer. But if it is caught early, it can more often than not be treated successfully, which is why awareness like this is so important.

"It is crucial for every man to acknowledge the threat that prostate cancer can pose to his life. Some men in particular face a higher than average risk and so if you are over 50, black, or have a family history of prostate cancer, it's important that you speak to your GP about the disease.

"Anyone with any concerns can speak to Prostate Cancer UK's specialist nurses on 0800 084 8383 or visit"

Belfast Telegraph Digital

Daily News Headlines Newsletter

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox.


From Belfast Telegraph