Scared Swayze says may have only 2 years to live

Tue Jan 6, 2009 5:20pm EST
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By Jill Serjeant

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Actor Patrick Swayze, in his first television interview since being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer last year, said he was scared, angry and "going through hell" and may only have two years to live.

A year after his diagnosis with one of the most deadly forms of cancer, the "Dirty Dancing" star told TV interviewer Barbara Walters that he already has defied survival rates and reports predicting he should have "been dead a long time."

But he acknowledged his time may be short. "I'd say five years is pretty wishful thinking. Two years seems likely if you're going to believe statistics. I want to last until they find a cure, which means I'd better get a fire under it."

The American Cancer Society says pancreatic cancer has only a five percent, five-year survival rate. The majority of patients die within six months.

"You can bet I'm going through hell," Swayze told Walters in the interview to be broadcast on ABC on Wednesday.

"There's a lot of fear here ... Yeah, I'm scared. Yeah, I'm angry. Yeah, I'm (asking) why me?" Swayze, 56, told Walters.

But he denied reports he was near death. "Am I dying? Am I giving up? Am I on my death bed? Am I saying goodbye to people? No way."

Swayze said doctors diagnosed stage 4 pancreatic cancer last January, with the cancer already having spread to his liver.   Continued...

<p>File photo shows Patrick Swayze and his wife Lisa Niemi in Los Angeles May 23, 2008. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok</p>