Bret 'The Hitman' Hart, pro wrestler, hopeful about cancer recovery
'I like to think at least for right now I'm cancer-free,' says wrestling legend after surgery
Canadian professional wrestler Bret Hart may have won the biggest bout of his life.
"I think that I excellently executed prostate cancer," said the grappler known as "The Hitman" during a news conference in Calgary to talk about his Feb. 10 prostate cancer surgery.
Hart said he has to keep a close eye on his condition for the next couple of years, but he is 99 per cent sure he has beaten it.
He said it was "really scary" when he learned he had the disease, and admitted he was initially hesitant to talk about it.
"There was a part of me that felt that it was kinda personal, and a part of me was going, 'Just keep it to yourself. I don't need to tell anyone,'" he said.
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But Hart said he was glad he came forward and made the decision to go public with his illness.
"Showing that you're human, and you're susceptible to these kind of things, it's a good example for everyone else," he said.
'Fight Bret Fight' T-shirt fundraiser
"The people that have come forward to get PSA levels checked and are following up on the same process that I did is hopefully, in the end, gonna save some lives and do a lot of good," Hart said.
His doctor, Eric Hyndman, said Hart's chances of being cured are "excellent" at this time. Still, Hart acknowledged there's no way to know for sure.
"You never know if the cancer is gonna come back," he said. "I like to think at least for right now I'm cancer free."
He credits regular medical checkups and PSA tests — used to measure the level of prostate-specific antigen in men's blood — for catching the cancer in its early stages.
Hart has had serious health issues before, including a significant stroke in 2002 that left him partially paralyzed, but from which he made a successful recovery.
Hart has released an exclusive "Fight Bret Fight" T-shirt in his online store, and a portion of the proceeds will go back to the Calgary Prostate Centre where he received care.
"I think it's important that Calgarians look out for Calgarians, and Albertans look out for Albertans a little more than seeing all the money all the time end up going down east," he said.
"With my name and recognition of having kinda come out of the closet with all this, I wanna try and do some good with it."
With files from The Canadian Press