- The Washington Times - Monday, March 16, 2009

NEW YORK (AP) - Don Imus has prostate cancer _ and confidence in a full recovery.

The 68-year-old radio personality made the announcement Monday on his morning show from New York, which airs on ABC Radio Networks and cable’s RFD-TV. He said he wrestled with the idea of making it public, but figured he should because he might have to miss some work due to treatment.

Imus, who has a charity to help children with cancer, said he has early stage cancer, which means it hasn’t spread outside the prostate.

A one-time shock jock who now does a show heavy on the media and politics, Imus was fired by CBS Radio and MSNBC in spring 2007 for a racial slur of the Rutgers women’s basketball team. He later apologized. He’s built his radio network back to the level it was before the incident, although his influence has waned.

Imus said he was surprised more than anything about the diagnosis, since he’s been intent on following a healthy diet for the past decade.

He noted that doctors seemed reluctant to talk about one of his big worries: What prostate cancer treatment will mean for his sex life.

His type of stage 2 prostate cancer can be treated with seed implants, surgery, radiation or sometimes simply monitoring, depending on how aggressive the cancer is, said Dr. Ronald Ennis, director of radiation oncology at St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital in New York. (Ennis is not Imus’ doctor.)

“It’s certainly treatable and certainly has a good chance of being cured,” Ennis said.

Generally, one in six men are diagnosed with prostate cancer at some point in their life. More than half of men who reach age 80 have this cancer to some degree, although often at such a small amount that it isn’t life-threatening, he said.

Imus said he had spoken to politicians Rudolph Giuliani and John Kerry, who were both treated with prostate cancer. Through a spokesman, Imus later expressed appreciation for the good wishes he’d received from listeners and viewers.

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