Patrick Swayze may be fighting for his life against pancreatic cancer, but he also is battling the tabloids.
The Dirty Dancing star has released a statement to People, responding to recent reports in the National Enquirer that his cancer has spread to his liver and that the actor was preparing for his death by saying goodbye to his family.
Swayze has been responding well to treatment since he was diagnosed earlier this year and recently wrapped filming on his A&E TV series The Beast. The actor called the latest reports "lies" and referred to tabloids as "the only thorn in my side."
"Pancreatic cancer is an aggressive disease and from the moment I was diagnosed, I knew I was in for the fight of my life," Swayze said. "It's a battle, and so far, I've been winning. I'm one of the lucky few that responds well to treatment."
Swayze's diagnosis was first reported by the National Enquirer, although the publication's story suggested his outlook was much grimmer that it was later revealed to be.
"It's upsetting that the shoddy and reckless reporting from these publications cast a negative shadow on the positive and good fight I'm fighting," Swayze said. "For me, my family, and those close to me, it amounts to downright emotional cruelty. That makes me angry when hope is so precious."
Even so, Swayze also finds hope in the work he has just completed and in the support he's received from fans through his cancer battle.
"I'm very proud of the work I've done on my new series The Beast," he said. "It's a great feeling of accomplishment to say you're gonna do something and do it.... As always, I appreciate all the love and support people have sent and continue to send my way. I thank you."