Mark Hoppus Reveals He's Battling an Aggressive Form of Lymphoma

Mark Hoppus stunned fans last month when he revealed that he’s undergoing chemotherapy for an unspecified form of cancer. In a new Twitch Q&A with Chilean Blink-182 fans, the musician shared his diagnosis.

“[I have] diffuse large B-cell lymphoma,” he said. “My classification is stage IV-A, which means, as I understand it, it’s entered four parts of my body. I don’t know how exactly they determine the four part of it, but it’s entered enough parts of my body that I’m stage IV, which I think is the highest that it goes. So, I’m stage IV-A…The cancer isn’t bone-related, it’s blood-related. My blood’s trying to kill me.”

Hoppus has spent the last few weeks going through intensive chemotherapy. “The first chemo, I felt like I was a zombie that fell onto an electric fence and was just being shocked,” he said. “The second round of chemo, I just felt very weak and tired. Really just like the worst flu ever. The third round of chemo, I started retching. Nauseous and that whole thing.”

More than 18,000 Americans are diagnosed with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma every year, making it the most common type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma in the United States.

“DLBCL is an aggressive (fast-growing) lymphoma that can arise in lymph nodes or outside of the lymphatic system, in the gastrointestinal tract, testes, thyroid, skin, breast, bone, or brain,” reads a fact sheet by the Lymphoma Research Foundation. “Often, the first sign of DLBCL is a painless, rapid swelling in the neck, underarms, or groin that is caused by enlarged lymph nodes. For some patients, the swelling may be painful. Other symptoms may include night sweats, fever, and unexplained weight loss. Patients may notice fatigue, loss of appetite, shortness of breath, or pain.”

At the time of the fan Q&A, Hoppus was one day away from finding out if the treatments were working. “Tomorrow’s test is to find out if my chemotherapy is working at all,” he said. “If it is, I go back for at least three more rounds. Ideally, I go in tomorrow and they say, ‘Congratulations, your chemotherapy has worked and you’re all done and you’ll never have to think about this cancer again for the rest of your life.’”

Even in that scenario, Hoppus would still have to undergo three additional rounds of chemo just to make sure the cancer is completely gone. And if the chemo hasn’t been working, he’ll undergo a possible bone marrow transplant as well as additional chemo. “We’re beating this cancer,” he said. “It’s just a matter of time.”

Hoppus’ mother is a cancer survivor, and she’s been a big help to him throughout the process. “Oddly enough, we have the exact form of cancer,” he said. “And she beat it, so I’ve been able to talk to her and bond with her quite a bit.”

The chemo has caused his hair to fall out, but Hoppus has managed to retain his sense of humor about the situation. “I want to get the absolute worst toupée,” he says, “so that it’s obviously not my hair, and just walk around and see how people look at me.”

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