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CNN LARRY KING LIVE
Saving Lives: Are You At Risk for Prostate Cancer?
Aired August 21, 2009 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, what do General Colin Powell, tennis great John McEnroe and legendary baseball manager Joe Torre have in common?
They're all speaking out against prostate cancer, the second leading cancer killer of American men -- and for very personal reasons.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COLIN POWELL, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: I suspected I would have it eventually.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE TORRE, MANAGER, LOS ANGELES DODGERS, PROSTATE CANCER SURVIVOR: Lo and behold, there it was. I had prostate cancer.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: An hour that could save a loved one's life or yours, next on LARRY KING LIVE.
A very important program tonight. And I won't go overboard, but it could help possibly save your life.
Joe Torre will join us later. You'll be hearing individually from lots of different people.
But right here is our panel.
Assembler Michael Milken, not only a prostate cancer survivor himself, but the founder of the Prostate Cancer Foundation. Someone said if they ever cure this, they'll name the cure the Milken Cure.
John McEnroe, seven time grand slam tennis champion. He's ambassador to "Stand Up To Cancer."
It's John's father who, by the way, had prostate cancer, right?
JOHN MCENROE, 7 TIME GRAND SLAM TENNIS CHAMP, AMBASSADOR, "STAND UP TO CANCER": Yes, that's right. KING: And Dr. Christopher Rose, a leader in his field, radiation oncologist and medical director of the Center for Radiation Therapy in Beverly Hills.
Dr. Rose, I'll start with you. If you'd briefly tell us, what is prostate cancer?
DR. CHRISTOPHER ROSE, RADIATION ONCOLOGIST: Well, prostate cancer is a malignancy. It's an uncontrolled growth of the gland which creates secretions in which the -- the sperm are transported out of the male.
KING: It only can happen in men.
ROSE: That's correct.
KING: It occurs inside the gland?
ROSE: That's where it starts.
KING: And grows slowly, right?
ROSE: It tends to be a slow growing disease in most people.
KING: So what is the biggest fear of it, then?
ROSE: Well, the problem is that it can cause local problems. It can cause obstructions, which makes it hard to urinate. But, worse, it can spread outside the gland and go to other parts of the body and eventually end up in significant disability and death.
KING: When were you diagnosed with it, Michael?
MICHAEL MILKEN, PROSTATE CANCER SURVIVOR: 1993, Larry.
KING: And when you were told, what was the first thing you did, knowing you as a man of action?
MILKEN: Well, when they told me I had 12 months to live, I had to rest for a few minutes, I think, at first, and then try to think what I could do differently. At that point, I had lost 10 relatives to cancer. And I was just trying to figure out what I could do different than they had done.
KING: Had it spread?
MILKEN: Yes, it had.
KING: So the -- the worry is supposed to be -- with all we read and we'll be discussing this a lot -- if it spreads, you're doomed.
MILKEN: Well, I -- I'm happy to be here 16 years later and I think that isn't the case. Then, that might have been the diagnosis, but not today. And there are millions of men living around the world who've had prostate cancer and who've had prostate cancer that has spread, Larry. KING: But there's lots of dilemmas about it -- decision-making. We read articles almost all the time in "The New York Times," "The Wall Street Journal," don't do this test, do this test.
We'll get to all of that.
John, how did you get involved in all of this?
MCENROE: I guess -- well, originally I was -- they were looking for someone 50 years old, because the campaign was 50 percent of people over 50, you know, have an enlarged prostate. But then even since I've been involved the past year, the guidelines -- the American Neurological Association has announced that 40 is the new test. At the time, that maybe they should start having -- well, this is part of what you were saying, a PSA test, you know.
MCENROE: And I'd like to think that at 50, myself turning 50 in February, living a healthy lifestyle, an active lifestyle and being the type of person that, because of that, wouldn't want to go to a doctor, I don't need to have the test -- you know, so trying to be proactive instead of reactive.
And, obviously, since my father had it like five years ago, it hit closer to home and I knew more about it. So it seemed like a natural fit to be part.
KING: Was your father cured?
MCENROE: Yes. So, you know, he's doing well.
KING: All right. Explain, Dr. Rose, the PSA test.
ROSE: The PSA is a substance which is produced only by the prostate gland. And when patients have prostate cancer, they have an over abundance of this and it can be tested in the blood.
KING: And it -- you take a blood test?
ROSE: That's right.
KING: You get a number, right?
ROSE: That's correct.
KING: And with that number, you then have decisions to make, right?
ROSE: Well, the number is a moving target. There's no one number that says that you have prostate cancer. But that can alert you to do additional tests.
KING: Like biopsies?
ROSE: Biopsies and then there's also a new test, which is -- which appears to be even more accurate in determining which patients are going to have prostate cancer.
MILKEN: And it's kind of amazing when you think of other cancers, Larry. Here you have a simple test and there's a great debate, should you take a test, shouldn't you. But I would not be alive today had I not had that simple blood test.
KING: What's the argument against taking it?
There is reports that people are -- there's false positives, you shouldn't take it.
MILKEN: Well, there's -- the arguments are what to do if your PSA is high, etc.?
But I think we've been able to substantially reduce the death rate in America and other parts of the world by that simple test. And men are being diagnosed far earlier with prostate cancer.
The question is once you're diagnosed, what do you do?
KING: And there are sometimes like four or five decisions you can make.
And in this case, it's left up to the patient, right?
ROSE: Well, I mean, I think we like to try and guide our patients. And the modern ethos is that the patient is the person who makes the decision.
KING: Legendary radio man, Don Imus, took to the airwaves in march, to tell his listeners about his cancer.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP FROM MARCH 16)
DON IMUS: Last Wednesday -- was it last Wednesday -- I was diagnosed with stage two prostate cancer. Yes. And I thought, I don't want to -- it wasn't great news, but I was actually kind of surprised, you know. So well, and it was such that it's not out -- it's confined to the prostate. I had a bone scan on it -- when did I -- when did I have that bone scan, do you remember?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A couple of days ago.
IMUS: Yes. That was fine. So I have the great confidence in my doctors.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Don looking panic-stricken, doesn't he?
That was before he fell asleep.
MCENROE: I think the good news, though, is that if detected early, probably like a lot of the cancers -- you correct me if I'm wrong -- there's a very, very high cure rate. So I think that's the idea behind getting tested earlier. And it seems illogical not to have a PSA test.
Michael, you just said yourself, I think one out of six men are going to get prostate cancer.
MILKEN: That is correct.
MCENROE: So it's hard to imagine there's an argument against it at this point. Even the I-Man wouldn't argue with that. So there's a -- there's good news to be had here.
MILKEN: And I think one thing we've seen in the last 15 to 16 years is a tremendous increase in the quality of treatments and alternative treatments that -- if it has spread, so that your decision is not watchful waiting or -- or radiation or surgery, but it's a much more complicated decision. There's a lot of choices today.
KING: All right.
ROSE: Yes, and I think that the...
KING: Anyone can jump in.
ROSE: You know, the -- the public health authorities are looking at a moving target. They look at the results of treatment from 10 or 15 years ago. They see -- or 20 years ago. They see patients who the quality of life is significantly degraded as a result of the treatment.
They see a disease that takes a long time to end up killing the patient and they make the statement, well, perhaps it's better not diagnosed.
I mean I think Mike, you'll tell that the quality of life of patients after they're treated, either with surgery or with radiation, is significantly better. Most people, in fact, have no problems.
MILKEN: I think a lot of people think of cancer differently. They think about someone that had radiation -- a lot of damage to other tissues -- or they think about chemotherapy. Science has evolved so far today that the side effects of chemotherapy have been reduced through new science. The quality of radiation has increased dramatically and the side effects...
KING: Which is what you do, right?
ROSE: That's right.
MILKEN: And in surgery today, we have robotic, minimally invasive surgery, where people are actually out of the hospital in within a day or two of going in.
KING: We'll get later to the decisions that are made here and the is it a myth to say you will die with it, not of it?
He's fought wars and prostate cancer -- General Colin Powell tells us about it next.
KING: As part of our prostate cancer show tonight, we're including General Colin Powell, former secretary of state, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs.
He had surgery for prostate cancer in 2003 and has remained very active -- why -- about it?
COLIN POWELL, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: Well, it was a -- a problem I had. I dealt with that problem. I'm a prostate cancer winner. And I suspected I would have it eventually, because my -- my PSA, my screening number was always high. And my doctors at Walter Reed -- great doctors -- would give me a biopsy every few years. And it was the third biopsy that found it. And I elected to have surgery and remove my prostate.
KING: You had choices, right?
POWELL: I had choices I could have done there. And all of them...
KING: Many, right?
POWELL: ...have their advantages and disadvantages. And, increasingly, it's being done by robotic surgery. You know, the science of enterology.
But it was a problem I had to beat. I beat it. I'm in great health. I'm in fine shape. My PSA remains now zero, of course. And you move on with life.
What's important and why I was able to catch it and deal with it is regular exams. Regular exams, PSA tests, but also regular digital exams. And it's especially important in the African-American community because African-American men have a higher propensity for prostate cancer than white men.
And so I encourage and I have encouraged in a number of PSAs -- public service announcements and in other ways -- to encourage all men as soon as you get to an age where it is more likely for you have to it, to take PSA testing and but have a digital exam, as unpleasant as it may be. It may save your life.
KING: As we've been discussing tonight, though, man is in an unusual position -- men, with this disease, is they're given choices. Most people, they tell you you've got this, you do this.
But men say well, you can have radiation. You can have watchful waiting. You can have this kind of surgery. You can do this. There's even a dispute over whether you should take the PSA, whether too many of them are given. POWELL: Yes.
KING: What are the costs going to be under health insurance, right?
POWELL: Yes. Yes.
KING: A wide range of choices.
How do you make it?
POWELL: You make it in consultation with your doctor. And, ultimately, it's a decision you have to make personally.
In my case, once the tumor was discovered and we determined that it was wholly contained within the prostate -- it hadn't spread outside the prostate -- I sat down with my surgeon and I sat down with the radiologist and they took me through the alternatives and the possibility of success and the after-effects, the problems that one might -- that I might have.
KING: Radiation is much less than surgery, right?
POWELL: Radiation much less than surgery. But surgery is -- is more, frankly, definitive than radiation. And after thinking about it all and then consulting with my -- my wife and consulting with my family, I had great confidence in the surgeon who was going to be doing it. And so I had elected to have surgery.
KING: Were you scared?
POWELL: Sure. Until I took the joy juice and then I just went away for a couple of hours.
KING: Were there many post-problems?
POWELL: I had a few. I had a few. And I don't think we need to go into the...
POWELL: ...exquisite detail of that. But it was a couple of months -- several months before I felt that the worst was over. And with each passing month, it was better and better.
KING: Do you need regular checkups now?
POWELL: I go for a regular check-up every year at Walter Reed, but there's nothing to check up on.
KING: By the way, one...
POWELL: It's gone.
KING: That's an Army hospital.
POWELL: Walter Reed is an Army hospital.
KING: Is it a good hospital?
POWELL: It's a great hospital.
KING: I mean do you get top surgeons there?
POWELL: We've got great surgeons there. I've been cared for by Walter Reed for the last 20 or 25 years. All of our military facilities are under pressure now because of the demands of the war in Afghanistan and Iraq. So you -- you have to take that into account. And there's a merger taking place now between the Bethesda Naval Hospital and Walter Reed. So it's going to be one combined new medical facility.
KING: But as we're encouraging every man over what age?
POWELL: Well, I'll let -- I'll let doctors say that. I think it's over 40 that you'd better start getting this test.
KING: Do the PSA test...
KING: ...because that's an indicator.
POWELL: It's -- it's controversial. Some people say, well, maybe it's not a good indicator. But I knew it was a good ind -- I found it a good indicator because I was always high. And because I was always high, I religiously had digital exams.
KING: All right. Thanks, Colin.
KING: Coming up next, the manager of the Dodgers Stadium -- Joe Torre tells us how he struck out cancer.
Back in 60 seconds.
KING: So many great men have battled prostate cancer. Many of them have been brave enough to talk about it publicly on this program and we're showing you some of those clips tonight.
Here now are three great politicians sharing their stories.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP FROM SEPTEMBER 2000)
MAYOR RUDY GIULIANI (R), NEW YORK: I thought the -- the rates with seed -- seed therapy are just as good. Some of the side effects are a little bit less. I can see people that opt for surgery and then some people just do external radiation and some people just do implantation of seeds.
I thought doing the three things -- the hormones, the seeds and then the external radiation -- would give me the best chance of killing it no matter -- you know, no matter where it is.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP FROM SEPTEMBER 2003)
KING: Did you have surgery?
SEN. JOHN KERRY (D), MASSACHUSETTS: Larry, I did have surgery. Yes, I did. I had surgery at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore. I was very lucky. I had early detection and I'm able to say that I'm here cured and I want to stay that way.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP FROM MARCH 1992)
SEN. BOB DOLE (R), KANSAS: You mention cancer to some people and all the lights go out.
KING: We mentioned it on this show.
KING: In fact, the news came in on this program.
KING: The announcement about your cancer. And that's a scary word just to look at it.
DOLE: But you'd -- you'd be surprised at the people that I've heard from with different kinds of cancer. And the key to all this is early detection and seeing your doctor.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: He's won six World Series. He's a prostate cancer survivor. He's Joe Torre from Dodgers Stadium, next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP FROM MARCH, 2003)
MERV GRIFFIN: The first thing they say to you is, now, you have the champagne of cancer.
And you go, huh?
You know, Dom Perignon. No. You have the champagne of cancer because you have so many treatments. And they talked to me about a (INAUDIBLE) and I said well, I don't want anything sliced out of me.
I've never had an operation in my life. I -- no, I don't want to do that.
And then they told me about radiation. And I said I'll do that. And then I went off on my boat. I was in the Mediterranean for two months. And the doctor -- you know Skip Holden (ph) very well with the Milken Foundation. And he called me and he said, "Merv, you have to undergo treatment. What are you doing out there?"
And I said, "Well, I will. I will. I will."
By this time I had forgotten and he ruined my whole day. He called and said, "You've got cancer, remember?"
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Shortly thereafter Merv would pass away from a disease he tended to overlook.
By the way, there is a number to call if you want more information.
It's 1-800-757-CURE or you can go log onto pcf.org. That's the Prostate Cancer Foundation.
Joining our panel now from Dodgers Stadium in Los Angeles, the manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Joe Torre.
He's a prostate cancer survivor.
It's happening there -- Joe, how did you discover you had it?
TORRE: Well, Larry, it was just my regular, routine check-up. Actually, I -- I used to -- I took a stress test before I went to spring training. And this was in '99. And they discovered that my -- my PSA had elevated. It was like 2.6 and it was -- no, excuse me -- 4.6 from about 2.6. And my doctor -- my cardiologist said when you get down to Florida, have it checked again. And they checked it again and it stayed the same. I had a biopsy taken. And lo and behold, there it was. I had prostate cancer. You know, I never felt bad. I felt wonderful. Just -- we had just won the second World Series and I was tickled pink. And all of a sudden, you know, you get hit in the face.
KING: Now, you had decisions to make. You could have done radiology. You could have done nothing.
You chose surgery, right?
TORRE: Well, you know, I had an aggressive form of cancer and -- prostate cancer. And thank goodness Michael Milken, who I had not met, but my brother Frank had met, had called and -- and -- and really sort of cleared up all that fuzziness that was going on. Because this -- you know, when you first hear the word cancer, you just think of a black hole there and there's no way out. And then I talked to Michael and he gave me a list of doctors to check with. And I settled on having the surgery done after visiting with Bill Catalogna (ph) in St. Louis.
And, you know, it's 10 years. I knock on wood. And I'm very thankful for -- for the price that -- the Prostate Cancer Foundation and Mike Milken for directing me in the right -- the right way.
KING: It is difficult, John, though, when you hear that -- what Joe just described, right, when they say the word.
You haven't heard it, but can you imagine what it's like to be told, "You have cancer?"
MILKEN: Well, my father had cancer.
KING: Yes. Right...
MILKEN: My father had cancer.
MCENROE: That's sort of why I was here, is I think that -- that I have been affected in a different way, that it's my father, not myself, other cancer survivors or a doctor. And that the idea would be if it's the small price to pay to take a PSA test, it's like a cholesterol test, it's part of your regular check-up. And to live a healthy lifestyle, which, lord knows, we need to do more of in this country in general.
With six kids of my own, wanting to see people live a healthy and active lifestyle. And I feel like I'm in better shape in the last -- than I've been in 20 years.
So I guess that's where -- where I come in but...
MILKEN: Larry, I think John's made a really important point here. Heredity is only 20 to 30 percent. Lifestyle is 70. So you can actually affect your outcome.
So early detection is great, but you'd rather not get it (INAUDIBLE)...
KING: I want to find out what radiation does.
But first, Joe, what do you do since?
You -- you drink different kind of drinks, right?
You have your green tea and other things. You stay on top of this.
TORRE: I'm -- I'm all over it. I have green tea. I've got a regular ritual in the dugout every day. I get my green tea. And sometimes, if it's real hot, I have it iced.
But Mike Milken turned me on to a soy shake, which I continue to have on an everyday basis. And -- and I -- you know, I take some supplements and some minerals and enzymes. And, as I say, knock on wood, everything seems to be fine.
I get checked every three months and -- and make sure that, you know, my PSA level is at a manageable number.
And the whole thing about it, I think once you set your mind to the fact that, you know, you're going to live with this disease, you know, it's sort of like controlling a problem you have. I -- I guess like diabetics. You know, you can live with diabetes. It's just a matter of doing the right things to help you do that.
Nutrition is one. Exercise is another. And keeping on top of it.
You know, I -- I heard John talk about getting tested. Well, my son, who is in his 40s, probably too early to get tested, but if there's prostate cancer in your family, it's a good idea to get a baseline.
TORRE: And he's -- he's been doing that.
KING: Let's talk about something -- when we come back, we'll talk about radiation. But let's also talk about the fact that this is a man's disease and it also affects sex life.
We'll be right back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP FROM JANUARY 1999)
KING: Why be so public about it?
CHARLTON HESTON: Well, it's a very serious disease and it scares a lot of people and it shouldn't scare them if you go get a regular check-up the minute you come close on 50. And it's -- many American men suffer from it and I...
KING: So you feel that it (INAUDIBLE)...
HESTON: It's worth -- I'm -- I guess I'm the poster boy for...
HESTON: ...for prostate cancer.
KING: How old are you?
KING: How was it picked up?
HESTON: A routine physical.
KING: A PSA test? HESTON: Yes, the PSA was too high.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Charlton Heston, who would pass away much later on, of course, and not from prostate cancer.
What does radiation do, Dr. Rose?
ROSE: Radiation therapy kills cells that are dividing.
KING: So you get it after you're diagnosed with the cancer?
ROSE: That's correct.
KING: It kills the cells.
Doesn't it also kill good cells?
ROSE: Well, it does, but normal tissue, the good cells in the prostate and the cells around there have a higher propensity to repair the radiation damage. So by breaking the radiation up into little bits, the normal tissue tends to repair and the cancer keeps being killed.
KING: You were beyond doing that, right, Mike?
MILKEN: Mine had spread, so that surgery was an option. But regional radiation is an option for those who have had cancer that spread.
KING: What did your father do?
MCENROE: My father did do radiation and then it...
KING: And it worked?
MCENROE: And it worked. And we were talking during the break. One of the reasons why I'm here, as well, is the odds go up greatly. Joe was mentioning, with his son, the new baseline is that they're saying now it's 40 instead of 50. But the odds go up, how much did you say, 100?
ROSE: They double. They double if...
KING: So your -- your odds are greater to get it?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One in -- (CROSSTALK)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Exactly.
KING: Joe, you could have had radiation, right?
TORRE: Yes. In fact, Larry, I did have radiation. Because, as I said, it was a -- it was an aggressive form. And I had the surgery, which went very well. And then they just did some follow-up radiation just to sort of put a cherry on top of it.
KING: All right, let's discuss something that has to be discussed. It is a male disease.
What about effect on sex life, Joe?
TORRE: Well, you know, the thing is a lot of it depends on, you know, how you come through the surgery because there are -- it's a very delicate operation. And as Mike was talking about, it -- you know, they do it robotically now. But it's a very delicate surgery, where it affects the nerves, and that can lead to incontinence and, of course, impotence. But, you know, I -- I'm able to function.
I'm very thankful that Mike sent me to Bill Catalona, who, you know, continues to be a friend of mine. I always -- I always figure if I'm nice to my doctors, then I'll live longer. So I befriended all my doctors.
KING: Good point, Joe. But, Mike, that's a big fear. Come on, you tell a man this is in the gland that produces sperm, you scare them.
MILKEN: Well, today prostate cancer for most people -- 90 percent of the cases -- is not life threatening if you deal with it. Merv Griffin obviously...
KING: Did not.
MILKEN: ...unfortunately ignored when he could have dealt with things. But obviously the concern of most men is, what about incontinence and what about impotence?
In the case of incontinence, it's really rare today with a good surgeon and good radiation.
And in the case of impotence, really the question is, where's the cancer versus the nerves. And once again, technology has improved so greatly that there's been great breakthrough in that area also.
ROSE: You know, both treatments, both the newest surgical treatments and the newest radiation treatments are substantially able to spare radiation in the areas that cause impotence. Obviously, impotence occurs, it occurs much more frequently than any of us would like. But it's much, much less.
KING: Are we saying tonight every man over 40, as a safety feature, should take a PSA test? Are we saying that to the audience?
MCENROE: I think that's what we are saying. I believe...
KING: If you're over 40, take a PSA test.
MCENROE: Well, it's funny, because it was 50 at the beginning of this year when I became involved with this and started going around and talking about it. Since then, a few months later, it was recommended that the new baseline be 40. But you guys know more about it than I do. Is that correct?
MILKEN: American men for sure...
KING: African-American men, definitely.
MILKEN: ...because their incident is almost twice as high and the death rate is much higher. If you have a family, an uncle, a grandfather, a father, a first cousin, a brother, 40, and otherwise, you know, maybe 50 is OK.
KING: I see. But you're talking about every man. And if you're a woman listening, tell your husband or your father.
MILKEN: You know, it's interesting you bring that up, Larry. You know, most of the driving force in medicine in this country has been driven by women. And if you go speak to a group of 1,000 men and 50 women, half the questions will be asked by the women. They'll say my father's too embarrassed to ask, my husband's too embarrassed to ask. And they've been a real driving force since it affects the whole family.
KING: We'll talk about diet in a minute and come back with McEnroe and Milken and Torre and Rose. Joe will be with us for one more segment. We'll be back after this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JERRY LEWIS, ENTERTAINER: I had the heart, I had cancer, I had a variety of...
KING: You had prostate?
KING: Did they operate?
LEWIS: Oh, yes. Took it out.
KING: Found it early?
LEWIS: Oh, yes. Early detection is a secret. I'm living proof that early detection will keep you alive.
KING: Did you take that blood test?
LEWIS: That's right. And it wasn't what the (INAUDIBLE) like and he said, let's go and do it. And we did it. It's over. It's gone. Passed.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Joe, do you ever fear its recurrence?
TORRE: Well, as I said, Larry, I'm -- I'm on top of it regularly. And to me, you know, after you come out of the doctor's office and he checks you and you get the results back, it's like you're the healthiest man in the world.
So my -- my feeling is I'm getting checked so often now that if it does reoccur, it's at an early stage, and, as John pointed out, it's a curable disease, a controllable disease with early detection.
And I think that's the one thing that really we should promote -- getting a blood test, because it doesn't hurt and, as John said, it's -- you know, like you check your cholesterol, you check your PSA, because it's one of the few cancers that, you know, you can detect early, which is so important.
And, in fact, this is an interesting weekend, because here at Dodgers stadium, Frank and Jamie McCourt, their ThinkCure is going on this weekend. They're having their radiothon and their telethon to raise money for cancer research also.
So, you know, it's that weekend which sort of brings back the memory, and yet puts a smile on my face, because, you know, 10 years ago, when I was first diagnosed, men were dying at a more alarming rate than they are in this decade. So, I'm certainly thankful that I was able to be detected early on.
KING: Yes, it's a -- and we'll be part of that. I'll be part of that -- the radiothon. It starts -- runs Friday and through the weekend. An innovative, community-based, nonprofit celebration.
John is associated with a great organization, too. He's with the Stand Up to Cancer. And, John, you're also -- to set the record straight, you've done a campaign encouraging men to get tested. The full disclosure campaign. And GlaxoSmithKline funded and helped develop that campaign, and they compensated you, right?
MCENROE: That's true. That is absolutely true.
But it's also true that guys in general to me are very stubborn people. And they're very prideful. And I'm one of those guys. It was, look, I'm healthy, I was a professional athlete and tennis player. I don't need to get checked. I don't need to go to a doctor.
It seems at the very least that you should assess your options. I'm just the type of guy -- I don't know about you guys, but if I got lost driving around LA like I did trying to get to the studio, I wouldn't ask for directions. You know, we won't even do that, you know.
So it seems like at the very least, we could get to the point where something as critical as this, particularly when I found out my father had it.
MILKEN: You know, John is so right, Larry, we've had programs around the country where all the costs are paid for and we have a hard time getting a man out of his house to go. Women get checked all the time. They have babies. They're used to these issues.
And for a lot of men, they're either living or dying. If they don't know something, they're fine, and if they do, they're at risk. And so, it has been an issue.
And John's awareness campaign and others has really been important, and that's one of the reasons, besides research and treatment, that the death rate has dropped so significantly.
KING: Before Joe leaves us -- Joe, is there -- is there any connection between having your illness and the pressure of your job?
TORRE: Well, there's no question that stress can accelerate any problem you have. And that's why I try to eat right, I try to exercise a lot, because I think that reduces stress. So, you try to keep the tension down. Of course, leaving New York didn't hurt, with the stress level.
But the interesting part is when I was diagnosed, quickly, now, in '99, my wife said -- Allie said to me, you know, see, if we had retired, nobody would know about this, and at the time I said, yes, you're right. But once I did go public with it, and I had so many people come to me and just say, I had it, or I better get checked, it made me feel good that I was influencing other people.
And, you know, John McEnroe talking about it and -- because it's a very sensitive area. Anytime it affects your impotency or the possibility of your sex life, is the fact that, you know, when people -- when they see us living normal lives and, you know, even doing stressful jobs like this, that they realize that this is not a death sentence. And to me, getting checked is the easiest thing to do. And if you discover it early, you can continue living a very productive life.
KING: Joe, I thank you. We'll have a couple of segments left after you leave. We know you got a game to play, but we did want to remind you that the Think Cure radio telethon is on right now, and it will run right through Saturday night. You go to Dodgers.com/thinkcure for more information.
Joe, thanks a bunch. We'll see you at the ballpark.
TORRE: All right. And you're right, John, you did play tennis, pretty damn good, too.
MCENROE: Thank you. You're doing a great job as a manager, too, right now. Once again, well done.
KING: We'll be back.
TORRE: Thank you. So far, so good.
KING: We'll be back in 60 seconds. ANDERSON COOPER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Ahead on 36, tonight, Bush administration officials on the defensive responding to explosive allegations by former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge, that some wanted to raise the terror threat level to win the 2004 presidential election. Should hearings be held? Paul Begala and Frances Townsend weigh in.
And it was bad enough that a Libyan terrorist was allowed to go home to this hero's welcome, now the son of Libya's leader Muammar Gaddafi said the release of the Lockerbie was linked to trade deals between Libya and Britain.
And questions about a champion runner's gender. An investigation into whether she is really a woman. It's underway tonight. Those stories and more on "360."
KING: All the men we've had on tonight really are heroes. But we also do our own "Heroes" segments. Tonight's hero is a great guy named Derrick Tabb. He's executive director of the Roots of Music in New Orleans. Here's Derrick telling us about this incredible program.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DERRICK TABB, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, ROOTS OF MUSIC IN NEW ORLEANS: It's really a music program. We teach music from the beginning to until they're experts at it. They are musicians I guess you would say. We're just trying to keep them off the streets of New Orleans because right now the streets are very violent.
KING: How many kids have gotten involved so far?
TABB: Right now, we have 103 kids in the program and 400 on the waiting list.
KING: Are you going to be able to expand?
TABB: Yes. With funding, hopefully, yes, we can expand. Take on 400 if possible.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEN. NORMAN SCHWARZKOPF, NOVEMBER 1995: Everybody assured me across the board that I didn't have cancer. Everybody.
Oh, your PSA numbers are so low. The technicians that were in there when they're taking the biopsy said, you don't have it. No way.
KING: The urologist.
SCHWARZKOPF: The urologist who actually took the biopsy... KING: And what did he say?
SCHWARZKOPF: He said one -- he said very briefly, there's no other way to tell you this, you have cancer.
SCHWARZKOPFT: The big C.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Mike is chairman of the Milken Institute and the Prostate Cancer Foundation. You can go to PCF.org. Both publicly supported, non-profit charitable organizations. They have independent relationships with Pharma and various drug companies.
What's the latest with your organization?
MILKEN: Well, the latest, Larry, is there's 20 countries that are doing research around the world. And we're looking at sometime around 2015, 2016 of eliminating prostate cancer as a cause of death. So we're all going to take a vacation for at least a month or so at that point in time.
KING: I tell you, if they cure this disease, right, you're going to name this the Milken cure.
MILKEN: Well --
MCENROE: By -- when did you say?
MILKEN: 2016. And I think, Larry, the viewers might not remember that show. One of the first major shows on cancer -- 1995. And one of the difficulties was getting individuals so we could conduct studies, on families, where more than one person had cancer. That show in 1995, we had 3,000 families sign up within 30 days. Prior to that, it took 12 years to find families. And they are all reporting to duty once they heard you and General Schwarzkopf ask them to help.
But prostate cancer has really changed the treatments, the death rates have dropped substantially. And it's not just prostate cancer. It's all cancers today. Less people are dying of cancer, and hopefully, we'll eliminate all cancer by 2016.
KING: There's one aspect of this we haven't mentioned, watchful waiting.
KING: That's don't do anything.
No, it isn't don't do anything. It's watch it very carefully. I like the term "active surveillance." So, there are some patients in whom the disease is not likely to cause disability. And we really don't have time to go into what those characteristics are. But if you fit into that group, there's nothing inappropriate about taking your time to make a decision and seeing where the PSA goes and having repeated biopsies. But that's a small group --
KING: Is it a myth you die with it, not of it.
ROSE: We need to know better from genomic studies who is going to die with it rather than of it.
KING: Would you say if you tested, everybody over 75, every male over 75, over 50 percent might have prostate cancer?
ROSE: A significant number would. And the trick then is to know which ones of the lethal cancers that need to be treated. And we're doing great work in beginning to pick that apart. Right now, we don't know that. And because we don't know which are the lethal cancers and which aren't, if the PSA is rising rapidly, it does appear that the appropriate thing to do is to get treatment.
MILKEN: As Dr. Rose says, Larry, the solution is we want to know whether your cancer is a potential fatal cancer and going to affect your life or not. If it's not, then no treatment is required. But that concept of, quote, "watchful waiting" assumes that you will do something for yourself. I think we have some responsibilities. And one of those is nutrition, exercise, because we believe you can slow down the growth rate.
KING: Since you got involved in this campaign, now as its spokesman, John, do you worry more about it?
MCENROE: I worry more, but I also worry less. I mean, obviously, the more I've learned, the more I have become educated and the more pro active that I have become and continue to become has allowed me that sense of a comfort level, and being tested and knowing what happened with my father and his success. Because I had overcome that stigma, that I think a lot people -- I'm fine, I don't want to get tested.
I'm also, by the way, just happy to be here sitting here as a "Stand Up for Cancer" using the word ambassador as well as -- I guess people call me a tennis ambassador, considering where I came from 30 years ago when there was a couple people rooting against me.
KING: No kidding.
MCENROE: So, this is -- you know, the word ambassador and McEnroe, don't know, if they go hand in hand. So, I'm happy to be here.
KING: You're not exactly diplomatic.
MCENROE: Well, I'm getting there. I'm getting there. Maybe by 80, 90, I'm going to be...
KING: Do you think we'll ever going to overcome the concept of the word cancer hyphen means death?
KING: Because it's hard to get rid -- it seems you hear cancer...
MCENROE: Absolutely true. You guys are probably better able to answer that, but I say in a short word, yes.
MILKEN: Larry, I believe we already have. There are more than 10 million Americans who have had cancer.
KING: Have had it. Don't have it.
MILKEN: ..and are doing fine. And we've had two people run for president of the United States that had cancer. And I would bet you that most...
KING: Bob Dole and who?
MILKEN: John Kerry.
KING: That's right -- John Kerry.
MILKEN: And I would say most people didn't even know John Kerry had prostate cancer even though it was announced.
ROSE: Larry, you know, I think it shows like this and the questions you ask are the absolute antidote to the fear that people have. I mean, once people take cancer out of the closet and begin to grapple with it, it becomes a much less scary problem.
KING: Take your PSA test. Men over 40, take your PSA. It is a simple blood test. You get the results in a couple of days.
Back with our remaining moments after this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ARNOLD PALMER, MAY 1997: I found out more of my old friends from years ago have had prostate cancer than I could have possibly ever have believed. But the fact is that it is so great to have this PSA. They would have never found out that I had prostate cancer without the PSA.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Mike is very optimistic, but he is not a doctor.
Are you, Dr. Rose, optimistic?
ROSE: Yes. Absolutely. I'm convinced that my profession life, not my life, but my professional life will be shortened because numerous cancers will be cured and I will have less to do. KING: Really?
KING: You mean you might be put out of business?
ROSE: Wouldn't that be great?
KING: It would be great not to have to win and perform radiology on people?
ROSE: It would be great that cancer can be cured in such a way that patients don't have to have surgical or radiological treatments.
KING: And your role as ambassador, Mr. Ambassador, are you optimistic?
MCENROE: I am optimistic because I have become more educated. And I think at the very least that's what people need to do, educate themselves. It's like why go to a doctor and assess your options? Because you'll feel more comfortable with what those options are. And you'll feel like you make a better decision. So from that standpoint alone I'm much more optimistic.
KING: Michael, your association was with finance. When you hear -- when you -- had you thought about cancer before you were told you had it?
MILKEN: I had because my father and my mother-in-law were diagnosed. And I began funding breast cancer in 1972. It's hard for me to even think about it 37 years later we are still funding it. But I'm very optimistic, Larry. And I believe in the next five to ten years we will eliminate cancer as a cause of death. One in two men gets cancer, one in three women in America. And it will be the greatest economic stimulus. We talk about economic stimulus. It's worth $50 trillion to the U.S. economy if we can eliminate cancer as a cause of death.
KING: That's what we spend on cancer?
MILKEN: No, that's what the economic effect.
KING: I mean, people getting affected with jobs.
MILKEN: Losing productivity. Having someone, Arnold Palmer and others as symbols, but their productivity for our society runs for decades.
KING: Do we know the cause, Dr. Rose?
ROSE: We know that there are multiple causes of it. And the trick is to figure out how to reverse that, and that's what much research --
KING: But we don't know the cause of prostate cancer?
ROSE: Well, I mean, there are some suggestions that it has something to do with obesity. It has something to do with genetics.
KING: Do we know why more blacks have a problem than whites.
ROSE: No, we don't. And it's a question as to how much of that is genetic and how much of that is economics, for people who are disadvantaged and aren't able to get the treatments or don't go to have the treatments. It's very important that African-Americans particularly get the blood test. And as we said before, get it earlier and not be afraid. Because it does appear that stage for stage when the disease is found early, it's equally curable in Caucasians and in African-Americans.
MCENROE: Can I say one thing? I have six kids. And I watch more and more where there are more options for them to sit on their rear ends and do things without being active. And if there's one thing that I would do if I came here, it would be worth anything, is people to be more healthy and active. Because I can't imagine that wouldn't be a great help in all different forms of cancer.
Joe talked about the stress that he was under. And I think that they are encourage, they're discouraged from doing things more than ever. There are certainly more options. Hey, kids, don't watch TV. OK. I'll turn on a movie. Oh, no, don't watch the movie. Oh, DVD. I'll go on the computer. I'll do a video. I mean, it's crazy, you know.
MILKEN: Just the remote control. I'm sure Larry and I remember when we actually had to get up to change the channel.
KING: People had to get up.
ROSE: Yes, right. I remember that.
KING: OK. Thank you all very, very much. Thanks to Joe Torre. Thanks to the other who have contributed. Again, let me repeat the numbers. If you go to Web site PCF, that's Prostate Cancer Foundation, PCF.org or for more information 1-800-757-cure.
Have a great weekend, and remember, if you are a male over 40, get tested. "Anderson Cooper 360" starts right now.