'Young and the Restless' star Eric Braeden says he has cancer — and reveals common symptom he had

"The Young and the Restless" actor Eric Braeden, 82, reveals cancer diagnosis — what men need to know about their prostates.

Eric Braeden,
"Young and the Restless" star Eric Braeden revealed that he's currently undergoing treatment for cancer (photo via Getty).

This article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Contact a qualified medical professional before engaging in any physical activity, or making any changes to your diet, medication or lifestyle.

Eric Braeden, the actor best known for his role as Victor Newman on "The Young and the Restless," revealed he is undergoing treatment for cancer.

The 82-year-old announced his diagnosis in a 13-minute Facebook Live session on Friday.

The veteran actor, who has starred on the CBS daytime soap opera since 1980, told fans he experienced prostate issues while recuperating from a recent knee-replacement surgery.

"Whilst recuperating from the knee surgery, I began to have problems with my prostate," he said. "I hate to be this personal, but I think this may be good for some older guys who may or may not listen to this. It'll happen to them."

"My prostate, I'd had some problems with it before," he continued. "It manifests itself by you having to pee a lot. And it got to the point where I had to get up almost every half hour."

The German-born actor told fans he was diagnosed with cancer while being treated by a urologist for his bladder and urination issues. Biopsy results later revealed low-grade and high-grade cancer cells near his bladder.

"Needless to say, I was taken aback," Braeden said. "But I was determined to deal with it."

LOS ANGELES - NOVEMBER 9: Coverage of the CBS daytime series The Young and the Restless, scheduled to air on the CBS Television Network. Pictured (L-R): Melody Thomas Scott as Nikki Newman, Eric Braeden as Victor Newman, and Amelia Heinle as Victoria Newman. (Photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images)
Eric Braeden has starred in "The Young and the Restless" since 1980 (photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images).

Braeden's doctor was able to remove the cancer during a UroLift surgery, a treatment option for benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). The actor is currently receiving a six-week immunotherapy course to tackle the high-grade cancer cells.

"I'm a little under the weather, but not really much," the actor said. "I've learned now to listen to my body more and not go all out. I'm gonna get it. And I'll be in top form again soon."

"I will lick this," he continued. "This bastard ain't going to get me; I'm going to get it."

To learn more about prostate health, scroll below.

Function of the prostate

The prostate is a small gland that's part of the male reproductive system. It sits low in the pelvis, just below the bladder and in front of the rectum. The walnut-sized gland helps create the fluid in male ejaculation.

Common enlarged prostate symptoms

As men get older, their prostate grows larger and may push up into the bladder and pinch the urethra, the urine tube that drains the bladder. These changes could lead to urinary problems, including having to urinate more often, having an urgency to pass urine and getting up throughout the night to go to the bathroom.

Medical experts say that it’s important to understand bodily changes that could have a significant impact on their overall health.

Enlarged prostate diagram: Signs and symptoms of prostate cancer
As men age, the prostate gland can enlarge. The left photo shows a "normal" sized prostate gland surrounding the urethra, and on the right, an enlarged prostate gland. (Photo via Getty Images)

“Like many of our organs, as we get older there’s an accumulation of DNA damage from mutations over the years and sometimes that DNA damage can lead to a cancer in the prostate. It’s actually very common to get prostate cancer,” Dr. Scott Tyldesley, a radiation oncologist at the BC Cancer Agency, said in a previous interview with Yahoo Canada.

Tyldesley, who is also a clinical professor in the Division of Radiation Oncology at the University of British Columbia, says a symptom that’s more rare, and potentially more sinister, occurs when prostate cancer spreads to the lymph nodes in the pelvis. If this happens, men will experience swelling in their legs.

Prostate cancer can also spread to the bones, which can lead to new or unusual bone pain, particularly between the joints, the spine or pelvis.

“If somebody’s getting a lot of perineum or prostate pelvic pain particularly in combination with those urine symptoms that would be something you should get checked out sooner rather than later,” Tyldesley advised.

Men over the age of 50 should speak to their doctors about regular screenings for prostate cancer. (Image via Getty Images)
Men over the age of 50 should speak to their doctors about regular screenings for prostate cancer. (Photo via Getty Images)

One of the ways men can get screened is through a Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) test, which measures the amount of PSA in your blood.

“That is not a diagnostic test for prostate cancer, but people who have a higher than normal level of PSA, particularly if it’s coupled with some other problems, increases the probability that they have prostate cancer,” Tyldesley added. “We often use some combination of symptoms, physical findings and PSA levels to decide whether to pursue a biopsy. Ultimately it’s a biopsy that helps determine whether somebody has prostate cancer.”

Who is at risk for prostate cancer?

According to Tyldesley, men between the ages of 55 and 70 should talk to their doctor about getting regularly screened for prostate cancer.

Aside from age, there may be a genetic predisposition to prostate cancer that can increase a person's risk, making it vital to know your family's medical history.

For example, if your dad and brother have a history of prostate cancer, then it’s more important you get tested. Men who come from families with a history of breast cancer also have a higher risk of prostate cancer, according to the National Cancer Institute.

Men can be proactive about their prostate health by adopting a healthy diet with regular exercise (Image via Getty Images).
Men can be proactive about their prostate health by adopting a healthy diet with regular exercise (Photo via Getty Images).

The institute's research also shows race is a factor linked to the cancer.

African-American men have the highest risk of prostate cancer, followed by Caucasian, Hispanic and Native American men.

“There are some differences in rates and severity in different ethnic groups even within the same country, but it’s not entirely clear if that’s an underlying genetic factor or an environmental factor,” Tyldesley noted.

How men can be proactive about their prostate health

Aside from knowing your family's medical history, Tyldesley says eating a healthy diet is also important for your prostate health.

Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables daily, minimizing red meat in your diet, exercising several times a week and moderating the amount of alcohol in your diet are all important steps to take to ensure prostate and overall health.

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