OHIO (WJW) — James Michael Tyler, the actor who played Gunther on “Friends,” has announced he has stage 4 prostate cancer.
Hoping to save others, Tyler shared his story in an interview with Craig Melvin on Monday on “TODAY.”
“It’s of course a stage 4, late-stage cancer,” he said. “So, eventually, you know, it’s probably going to get me.”
In September 2018, Tyler said he was diagnosed at age 56 with advanced prostate cancer, which has spread to his bones. The diagnosis came after a routine physical and his first PSA test, which is used to screen for prostate cancer.
As part of his treatment, he underwent hormone therapy and said he felt fine. But during the pandemic, the cancer mutated, causing fractures in his bones and tumors up and down his spine, according to “TODAY.” He said he can no longer walk.
He’s now undergoing chemotherapy.
When asked what he would have done differently, he said he would have listened to his wife.
“I would have gone in earlier, and it would have been, hopefully, caught earlier,” he said. “The next time you go in for just a basic exam or your yearly check-up, please ask your doctor for a PSA test. Caught early, 99 percent treatable.”
The American Cancer Society recommends men at average risk for prostate cancer get tested starting at age 50.
Tyler said he’s reached one goal this year, and he has one more.
“My goal this past year was to see my 59th birthday,” he said. “I did that. My goal now is to help save at least one life.”