Stars vs cancer: Manisha is not alone

We take a look at other celebs who have battled the deadly disease and survived

Just days after actress Manisha Koirala was reportedly diagnosed with ovarian cancer, she took to the social media to assure her fans that she was “sure (she’d) recover”.

“Dear friends thank you for all your wishes... I'm in good place n in good hands..with all your love n prayers I'm sure I'll was shocking to know but then life is full of must deal with it n move on with faith n dignity.(sic),” Manisha had written.

Despite the actress not confirming her illness, the industry is abuzz with reports that she has since flown to the US for cancer treatment.

There’s no doubting the emotional and physical trauma that she’d undergo in the days ahead.

In an effort to look at the positive side, we list out some celebs who have fought the deadly disease and survived.

Lisa Ray

The world was shocked when reports of Lisa Ray’s ill-fated run with cancer was circulated in June 2009.

The gorgeous, Candian-born actress was slowly finding her footing in Bollywood when the big blow came.

But, she refused to give up hope and blogged about her battle with Multiple Myeloma in ‘The Yellow Diaries’. The blog went on to become inspirational to many victims.

Within a year of her diagnosis, she was cured due to a stem-cell transplant. Since then she has been investing her energy in raising awareness about the disease and the benefits of the stem cell therapy.

“It may sound surprising, but my illness is the greatest gift I received as I got to see life from a different perspective. It has really been like my rebirth. I have to admit that cancer reset everything in my life,” she is quoted as saying.

Anurag Basu

Way back in 2004, Anurag had just completed his hit film ‘Murder’ and had married his girlfriend, who was expecting their first child, when he was diagnosed with acute Leukemia.

It appeared to be straight out of a movie script, he had later recalled.

His doctors had claimed his chances of survival were minimal, but it was an intense treatment by a famed doctor in Mumbai that finally helped him.

Although he does credit the doctor’s unique methodology, Anurag also believes that it was the desire to see the face of his daughter Ishana that willed him to fight.

“I wanted to live for was to see the face of my child. I did not think of living for long, but I did not want to die without seeing the face of my child. So I feel my daughter Ishana gave me strength to fight at that time,” he told a leading Indian daily.

Robert De Niro

It was in 2003 that this legendary actor was diagnosed with prostate cancer after he went for a regular health check-up.

Due to the early detection, he went into treatment and has maintained regular check-ups since.

It is reported that De Niro underwent a prostatectomy.

Upon full recovery, he stepped out to thank fans and friends for helping him attack the cancer.

"I didn't want it to come out in some sleazy way. I was fortunate enough by going public with it that people would give me the results of what they had done so it helped me make a decision," he had said.

Kylie Minogue

In 2005, the Australian singing sensation was hit by breast cancer. It was diagnosed just before her homecoming tour in Australia titled ‘Showgirl’.

Although doctors had initially misdiagnosed it and given her an all-clear, her condition further deteriorated, leading up to the cancer treatment.

However, she went ahead with her tour but made numerous changes to help her medical condition. From easier dance routines, to lesser costume changes, to longer breaks during the concert, Kylie altered her schedule to nurse her body.

Then, she moved to Paris for her treatment.

During that time, she even penned a song titled ‘Flower’. It is reported that it was written after doctors told her she wouldn’t be able to have kids.

Talking to Elle magazine, she had claimed to have developed a unique bond with every woman who has gone through similar ordeals.

“I feel close to every one of them and I think they do to me, it's not about anything else but what we've all been through.”

Rod Stewart

After his diagnosis of thyroid cancer in 1999, rockstar Rod Stewart had to undergo a surgery in 2001. Many claim it altered his voice, and he reportedly had to learn to sing again.

“The first thing you think is ‘Why?’ The next thing you think is “What can I do to help?’,” he was quoted.

Ever since he was cured, Rod has been instrumental in raising awareness about cancer and helping generate funds for ‘The City of Hope Foundation’, as it’d help cure all kinds of cancer.

He even revealed that cancer enabled him to rethink his star status. "It did bring me down to earth,” he told Piers Morgan Tonight.

Sheryl Crow

Nine-time Grammy winner Sheryl Crow learnt about her situation in 2006. She underwent a surgery and radiation therapy to cure herself.

Even though she followed a healthy lifestyle and her family’s medical history was devoid of cancer, she still got hit.

Ever since she has been cleared, Sheryl is an ultimate advocate of breast cancer prevention and insists that women should take routine mammograms.

She even decided to go all out and invest in an “all organic, clean food” diet, which she believes is crucial in keeping off the virus.

Last year, she revealed that she had benign brain tumour, and even blamed her excessive cell-phone usage for it.

“People go through challenging moments of losing people and of having their life threatened from illness or real grief. But they get through it. And that’s the testament to the human spirit and it’s — we are fragile, but we also are divine.”

Sharon Osbourne

After being diagnosed with colon cancer in 2002, the wife of famed heavy metal vocalist Ozzy Osbourne, wasted no time in getting the best treatment available.

She has since been declared cancer-free, but last month, she underwent a double mastectomy as a “precaution against breast cancer”.

Sharon revealed that the decision was made after she discovered she had a faulty gene that increased the chances of breast cancer.

She also founded the Sharon Osbourne Colon Cancer Center at Cedars-Sinai that helps the cancer-stricken patients into full recovery, and builds awareness about the deadly disease.


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