Wilko Johnson has undergone surgery to remove the cancerous tumour that’s been threatening to kill him since 2012.
He’s cancelled all future appearances to recover from the procedure which has been described as “nothing less than a reprieve of a death sentence.”
The former Dr Feelgood guitarist reported he’d been given ten months to live in January 2013 – but he’s been continuing to play live and last month released an album with Roger Daltrey.
Doctors recently investigated the football-sized tumour more closely and discovered it to be a rare type which grows very slowly and is less aggressive than the usual kind – leading to the option of further treatment.
Johnson tells GQ: “A friend of mine, who is a cancer doctor, became curious as to why I wasn’t dead, and why I wasn’t even sick.”
The surgery included removing his small and large intestines and parts of his liver. He says: “There is a small chance of dying, but that’s nothing – for over a year I’ve been living with a 100percent chance of dying.”
Johnson will spend months recovering from the operation, which is so unusual it hasn’t yet been given a name. “I’m apprehensive,” he admits. “But I’m pretty tough. I’m still here.”