Michael Douglas' Throat Cancer: Smoking + Drinking Is the Cause

Kim Conte
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michael douglas

Hollywood icon Michael Douglas -- son of Kirk Douglas and husband to Catherine Zeta-Jones -- has a tumor in his throat and will under go eight weeks of radiation and chemotherapy.

His doctors expect him to make a full recovery, and for his part the Wall Street star said in a statement, "I am very optimistic.

But one doctor isn't so sure ...

Dr. Kenneth Hu, co-director of the Head and Neck Institute at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York and notably not Douglas' doctor, told Good Morning America today that he suspects Douglas' years of smoking and drinking led to the cancer. And while the condition is likely curable, his treatment won't work properly if he doesn't quit. Says Hu:

"...Smoking during the radiation makes the radiation less effective."

Reps for Douglas have not confirmed whether smoking did in fact cause the tumor. Also unclear is whether or not he still continues to smoke, although it is rumored that he quit his half-a pack-per-day habit back in 2006. Let's hope this is the case -- for his (and his family's) sake.

Douglas is the first to admit his personal life has been a series of ups and downs in the last year: In April his son, Cameron Douglas, was sentenced to five years in prison on drug charges. He is also dad to Dylan, 10 and Carys, 7.

His movie Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps (with Shia LaBeouf) is set for release Sept. 24. We'll have to see whether his treatment will effect promotion of the film.

Best wishes to Michael for a speedy recovery.

Image via Twentieth Century Fox

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