Movember Stories: Pop Culture Icon Tommy Chong on Surviving Prostate Cancer


I was diagnosed with prostate cancer years ago. I was going to go on human growth hormone, but before you do that, you have to do a cancer scan and make sure you don’t have cancer. They checked my PSA levels and it was very high and I found out I had prostate cancer. After a biopsy, I soon learned I had rectal cancer too. Suddenly, I had some major decisions to make. When I got cancer, I told everyone. I was on CNN that night and revealed to Don Lemon I just found out I had prostate cancer.

I had a big tumor. I was going to use a more natural alternative treatment, but my son insisted there are certain cancers you don’t mess with. We found the best surgeon and the best oncologist who radiated it. They had to radiate both the tumor and my prostate.

Tommy Chong

I’m now cancer free. The only problem is, I had to get fitted for a colostomy bag. I’m making the best of it. I use it in my comedy act. I’m a comedian and I’m not going to hide what’s going on with me. I’m going to turn it around. After all, comedy is the ultimate truth.

For others out there who are facing a cancer diagnosis, don’t rely on folklore. Get that professional opinion and find out what it really is. You never know. It could be nothing or it could be something and that something could be cured by doing the simplest thing. Study your illness, but don’t mess around with it.

You don’t need to experiment. Educate yourself. Google it. For those men out there who consider going to a doctor a weakness, remember this is your health and you can’t worry about everyone else. Everyone is different. Your body knows and will let you know if you need more or less of something.

And it’s never too late to educate yourself. Being in quarantine all these months, I’ve had a lot of time to think. I’ve been binge-watching the show Outlander with my wife and creating art, which has been really for me these past few months. I’m currently working on something called “Painters and Players,” an idea that a buddy of mine came up with. Exactly as it sounds, musicians will play while the painters paint. We’re going to call it Chong and the Family Stone band, and it’s something I’m going to do with my wife and son who are both real painters.

Tommy Chong

And for the guys out there growing moustaches for Movember, don’t take anything personal when your wife starts talking bad about you! Tell her it’s for a good cause and it’s not forever. I get a rise out of my wife by letting my hair grow long. She hates it and I love it. I can look like an old Albert Einstein with my hair all messy. Sometimes you’ve got to shake things up.

Our fathers, partners, brothers and friends are facing a health crisis that’s rarely talked about. Men are dying 6 years earlier than women, and for largely preventable reasons. 1.4 million men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer every year and nearly 400,000 will die from the disease. Movember is making change happen by investing in these critical areas: prostate cancer, testicular cancer, mental health and suicide prevention, funding groundbreaking health projects to help men live happier, healthier, longer lives.

Join Tommy Chong in raising much needed funds and awareness for men’s metal health. Donate now at and to Sharp’s Mo Space.