Swedish actor, filmmaker and martial artist Dolph Lundgren is well known across the world for his roles in action movies of the 1980s and 1990s era. With a dashing personality that best suited a Viking, Lundgren fit in the idea of an action star really well at the time. In a shocking revelation, the 65-year-old actor has stated that he has been fighting with cancer for eight years now.
Lundgren visited the In Depth With Graham Bensinger show recently. During the conversation, The Rocky IV star said he was diagnosed with cancer in 2015. He continues to fight with it and has undergone several treatments to keep it in check.
“They found a tumor. They didn’t know what it was – just a tumor in my kidney. And they took it out here in LA in 2015 but then they did a biopsy and it was cancerous,” Lundgren said.
The next few years were the toughest of Dolph Lundgren’s life as he had to deal with cancer and live with the constant fear of losing the most precious gift of life. However, he sought different treatments, fought through the disease and paved the way to near full recovery.
Dolph Lundgren shares a detailed account of his battle with cancer
The Rocky IV actor continued to do the scans every six months to track his health after the initial battle but the cancer had grown back in 2020. He underwent a surgery to remove the tumors. In the video clip recorded a day after the surgery, Lundgren said:
“It’s the day after my surgery. They took out one tumor, then they took out another two they found and another three small ones. Hopefully it’s cleaned out. If it dies, it dies!”
Lundgren never lost hope and kept the fighting spirit alive. The final sentence, ‘if it dies, it dies’, is a famous dialogue from the movie Rocky IV and only shows the Swede’s resolve to keep fighting.
In addition to the tumors in the kidneys, Lundgren had developed a ‘lemon-sized’ tumor in the liver which the doctors said they could not take out.
“If they can’t take it out, that means you have to do systemic therapy. But then I started to get side effects, I got diarrhea and I lost a lot of weight.”
The doctors gave him a maximum two to three years to live but Lundgren sought a second opinion and additional treatment to curb the decline. Under Santa Monica-based oncologist Dr. Alexandra Drakaki’s guidance, Dolph Lundgren went through another round of biopsy. The procedure helped uncover the mutation which allowed him to heal through medication.
“So 2022 is watching these medications do their thing and finally, the thing had shrunk by 90 percent. Now I am in the process of taking out the remaining scar tissue of these tumors,” Lundgren revealed.
“The prognosis is that hopefully when they take these out, there’s no cancer activity and the medication I am taking is going to suppress everything else.”
‘Drago’ ponders over the potential causes of cancer
Dolph Lundgren is not sure what led his body to get cancer. He had an on and off relationship with steroids in the 1980s and 1990s depending upon the kind of physique his roles demanded.
“I tried steroids back in the 1980s, 1990s… I don’t know if it has anything to do with cancer. Of course it struck me it could have had something to do with it.”
Lundgren feels that neglecting health could be one of the reasons why people get cancer. Although he does not blame steroids for causing it, he feels that there could be a correlation between steroid use and cancer.
“Maybe it’s just me but you kind of blame yourself to some degree for it. I think maybe, there is some connection between testosterone therapy, HGH therapy and cancer in some people.”
Lundgren is on his way to full recovery. While nobody should have to deal with the health issue as serious as cancer, every grey cloud has a silver lining. The cancer taught the Rocky IV star to appreciate life more as he said:
“You know, you appreciate life a lot more. You appreciate every day. Every day I can be with people I love. You just appreciate being lucky enough to be alive and appreciate every moment there is.”
‘Drago’s’ secret battle with cancer is nearing its end. Fitness Volt wishes Dolph Lundgren a healthy and happy life.
You can watch the interview clips of Dolph Lundgren detailing his battle with cancer here, courtesy of Graham Bensinger’s YouTube channel: