Charlie Wilson’s War Against Prostate Cancer Won
Singer Charlie Wilson is known for rockinâ„¢ the house, but a recent health scare nearly shook him down for good and now heâ„¢s urging brothers to Å“man up and get screened for prostate cancer.
Å“I was diagnosed with prostate cancer in the last part of July, the summer, Wilson told “The Tom Joyner Morning Show.” Å“Itâ„¢s been a rough battle for me mentally. I caught it on a routine checkup.
It was an aggressive form of cancer, Wilson said, noting that after his first PSA test came back with a high number, it jumped a full point by the time he had a follow-up test a month later, a sign that something was definitely wrong.
Å“That test usually takes a year to jump a whole point, but it jumped in one month,” Wilson said, “so it was aggressive, growing fast inside me. Å“
The 49-year-old singer underwent a procedure in which radiation seeds were implanted into his prostate to kill the cancer cells. The seeds then dissipate, without any harmful effect on other cells, Wilson said.
Since the surgery, Wilson has teamed with the Prostate Cancer Foundation to educate black men about the disease.
Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in African-American men, who also have the highest mortality rate from prostate cancer of any racial or ethnic group in the U.S. One in every six men in America will be diagnosed with prostate cancer. One in every three African-American men will be diagnosed.
The American Cancer Society recommends that the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test be offered annually, beginning at age 50, to men who have a life expectancy of at least 10 years. African-American men and men with a strong family history of one or more first-degree relatives diagnosed with prostate cancer at an early age should begin testing at age 45.
Wilson – who has a new solo album, “Uncle Charlie,” due out Feb. 17, featuring Jamie Foxx, Snoop Dogg and Baby Face – is excited about his next tour and loves to talk about performing, but he said it was time for him to Å“inform more than plug his latest project.
He advises black men to watch their diet, which plays a key role in the development and growth of prostate cancer, and get screened ” even if they believe they are too young to contract the disease.
Å“I am lucky and blessed, Wilson said. Å“If you want to be blessed, then you need to go get checked out. Because if you donâ„¢t, one day youâ„¢re going to finally go ” your grand son will take you ” and youâ„¢ll find out you waited too late.