Cameron Mathison is asking for prayers and positive thoughts as he battles kidney cancer.
The Hallmark Channel host, 50, revealed this week that he was recently diagnosed with renal cell carcinoma, or kidney cancer, after experiencing some problems with his gut and undergoing an MRI.
Fortunately, his prognosis does not appear to be serious — in part due to his “healthy lifestyle” — but the actor said he was choosing to share the news on social media in hopes that his followers would send good vibes ahead of his surgery later this week.
“I have a health situation that I want to share with you all🙏🏼,” Mathison wrote on Instagram on Tuesday. “I announced this on @homeandfamilytv yesterday, and wanted to make sure I posted about it here as well.”
“There are many reasons I love social media, staying connected with you all, sharing fun experiences… well this time I’m asking for your help,” he continued alongside a photo of himself with his wife, Vanessa, and their two children, Leila, 13, and Lucas, 16.
“About a month ago, I had an MRI for some gut issues I’ve been having, and during that MRI they found a tumor on my right kidney,” the All My Children alum explained. “It’s consistent with Renal Cell Carcinoma … or kidney cancer.”
“The good news is that it hasn’t spread to any other organs🙏🏼 They say my healthy lifestyle and diet has no doubt helped keep it from growing and spreading to other areas, as doctors think it’s been growing in me for minimum 10 years🙏🏼,” he revealed. “I am extremely lucky that we found it early.”
Mathison went on to thank his urologist, family and Hallmark colleagues for their help, love and support through this trying time before calling on his followers for a special request.
“My surgery is scheduled on September 12th, I was hoping to receive positive thoughts, prayers, or whatever you feel comfortable with, on 9/12 (my surgery is at 1pm PST) 🙏🏼,” he wrote. “Feeling very grateful and optimistic!! 💪🏼🙏🏼❤️”
Shortly after sharing the news, Mathison received a several supportive messages from his friends — many of whom have also appeared on Hallmark Channel — including actresses Candace Cameron Bure, Ali Sweeney and All My Children alum Lacey Chabert.
“Absolutely praying for you Cameron, and over the doctors and nurses during your surgery as well as your family.🙏🏼” wrote Bure, 43.
“Lifting you up in prayer! All my love to you and your family❤️,” commented Chabert, 36.
“Praying for you & your family Cam. You got this!!💪🏼 Please let me know if there’s anything we can do. XO,” added Sweeney, 42.
According to the National Cancer Insitute, renal cell cancer occurs when cancer cells are found in the lining of the tubules in the kidney. Mayo Clinic reports that it is the most common type of kidney cancer.
The disease is most common in older patients and does not have a direct cause, but there are several risk factors, including smoking, overuse of over-the-counter pain medications, obesity, high blood pressure and family history.
Often times, people who are diagnosed with renal cell cancer show signs of blood in the urine, a lump in their abdomen, a perpetual pain in their back or side, loss of appetite, random weight loss and anemia, according to the National Cancer Institute.
Depending on the severity of the cancer and how far it has spread, patients have several options for treatment. Surgery to remove part or all of the kidney is often used when battling renal cell cancer, though other methods include radiation, chemotherapy, immunotherapy and targeted therapy.
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Mathison is best known for playing Ryan Lavery on All My Children from 1998 to 2011.
In recent years, the actor has appeared in several Hallmark Channel programs and currently serves as the co-host alongside Debbie Matenopoulos for the network’s morning talk show Home & Family.