Alex Trebek is opening up about his battle with stage 4 pancreatic cancer in a new interview with “Good Morning America.”
The “Jeopardy!” host, who announced his diagnosis in March, says he is back in chemotherapy, explaining, “I was doing so well, and my numbers went down to the equivalent of a normal human being who does not have pancreatic cancer. So, we were all very optimistic, and they said, 'Good, we're gonna stop chemo, we'll start you on immunotherapy.'"
He continued, "I lost about 12 lbs. in a week, and my numbers went sky-high, much higher than they were when I was first diagnosed. So, the doctors have decided that I have to undergo chemo again, and that's what I'm doing."
Trebek said the cancer can be “excruciating” at times, and causes “fatigue.”
Alex said it has also taken its toll emotionally, causing sadness and depression.
“When it happened, early on, I was down on myself,” he said. “I didn’t realize how fallible each of us is in his or her own way… I talk to the audience sometimes and I get teary-eyed for no reason. I don’t even bother to explain it anymore, I just experience it. I know it's a part of who I am and I just keep going.”
Now, Trebek says dying doesn’t frighten him.
Trebek said, "I realize that there is an end in sight for me, just as there is for everyone else. One line that I have used with our staff in recent weeks and months is that when I do pass on, one thing they will not say at my funeral is, 'Oh, he was taken from us too soon.' Hey, guys. I’m 79 years old. I’ve had one hell of a good life. And I’ve enjoyed it… the thought of passing on doesn't frighten me —it doesn't. Other things do; the effect it will have on my loved ones… it makes me sad. But the thought of myself moving on — hey, folks, it comes with the territory.”
For now, Trebek has no plans of stepping away from “Jeopardy!” He told “GMA,” "As long as I can walk out and greet the audience and the contestants and run the game, I'm happy.”