What Will Happen to Michael Douglas' Voice?
By PopEater Staff Posted Aug 18th 2010 07:56AM
Michael Douglas announced this week that a tumor has been discovered in his throat, and now outside doctors are warning that the aggressive treatment he'll undergo could alter, or even take away, his voice.
The 'Wall Street' star, 65, will undergo radiation and chemotherapy for eight weeks to destroy the tumor. "I am very optimistic," Douglas said in a statement. Other than that confirmation, little else is known about the star's condition, including the size of the tumor. Experts in the field say the actor faces a tough -- but winnable -- fight.
"You wouldn't treat a benign tumor with radiation, so most definitely this is a malignant tumor," Dr. Eric Genden, chief of head and neck cancer surgery at Mount Sinai Medical Center, told the Daily Mirror.
Dr. Kenneth Hu, co-director of the Head and Neck Institute at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York, told 'Good Morning America' that the fact that Douglas is getting radiation at this stage hints that the cancer is beatable, but that his voice will likely emerge hoarser than it was. If surgery is necessary, there is an increased risk of permanently damaging the actor's vocal chords.
Douglas' voice can be heard every weekday evening as the announcer for NBC's 'Nightly News' program. He's had the job since 2007.
The star decided to consult a doctor a few weeks ago after his voice became hoarse and he started having trouble swallowing. It's unknown how large or far along the tumor is.
Not surprisingly, Douglas' longtime smoking and drinking habits are being blamed for bringing on the throat cancer.
"That combination is, unfortunately, a recipe for the development of throat cancer," Hu said.
This news comes during a rough year for Douglas, whose son Cameron was recently jailed for five years on drug charges. He has canceled his promotional appearances for 'Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps.'
The Oscar-winning actor is married to Welsh actress Catherine Zeta Jones. They have two children, Dylan Michael and Carys Zeta.
He has won three Golden Globes and two Academy Awards, first as producer of 1975's Best Picture, 'One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest,' and as Best Actor in 1987 for his role in 'Wall Street.' Douglas received the AFI Life Achievement Award in 2009.
Michael Douglas Snapshots
Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones, right, pose during a visit to the Children's Hospital for Wales in Cardiff, where they met staff and children on Friday, July 23, 2010.
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