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Lymphoma and Pets
Def Leppard Guitarist Says He's 'in a Good Spot' Regarding Hodgkin's
Legendary Def Leppard guitarist Vivian Campbell appeared on the Eddie Trunk Podcast to discuss his ongoing battle with Hodgkin's lymphoma.
I seem to be in a good spot at the moment. You can never be too certain with these things because they can come creeping back, but after three rounds of chemo over the last two years I did a stem-cell transplant in October. The first [post-transplant] PET scan that I did on New Year's Eve came back really, really good – there's no sign of the tumors – I'm hopeful that we're on the right path. I mean, that's certainly the way I've been thinking. I'm not letting it concern me at all. For the next few years I'll be doing more scans and follow-ups and stuff just to make sure, but I'm certainly feeling healthy.
Campbell also spoke about what it was like to find out last year that his cancer had returned after announcing in November of 2013 he was in remission.
For anyone who knew anything about cancer, they'd probably say, 'Well, that's not unusual.' But I didn't. I got my diagnosis in the spring of 2013 when we were doing the Las Vegas residency with Def Leppard. As soon as we were done with that, I started six months of chemo. I just kind of naturally assumed you do the chemo, you do a scan at the end of the chemo and it shows that you're good and that's it. Apparently not. It was like, 90 something percent gone and it was what they couldn't see on the scan that came creeping back. It came back so fast. That's why the doctors advised me to do the stem-cell transplant – to try and kill it at the microbiological level. So it's pretty much rocket-science stuff. I mean, it's amazing technology. I personally feel pretty good about this right now. I feel that it's gone. But, like I said, you never really know and you've gotta keep your eye on it. If it's gonna come back, it's gonna come back in the next couple of years. But hopefully not.
When asked if he had spoken to his musical peers who have also been diagnosed with cancer, such as Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath, Campbell said he had not.
Funny enough actually, I think that Tony Iommi and I have the same cancer – Hodgkin's lymphoma – as far as I know. [Note: It is believed Iommi has follicular non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.] Now I don't know Tony personally, so I haven't talked to him about it. But I've talked to a lot of people. It's amazing. Even just through my Facebook page. I mean, you put this kind of stuff out there and I personally was amazed by how rampant it is, how many people have been affected by it to some degree or people that are close to them in their family. I've had a lot of advice but to be honest, I'm just pig-headed and Irish and I just do my own thing. The main thing for me was to continue working and to continue my life unabated and to not let it compromise me as much as possible. I think that's been a big part of my mental recovery on this.