Vinnie Jones Skin Cancer: British Actor, Soccer Star Reveals Battle

Image: Vinnie Jones Skin Cancer: British Actor, Soccer Star Reveals Battle

Monday, 25 Nov 2013 12:44 PM

By Alexandra Ward

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Vinnie Jones, a well-known British actor and former professional soccer star, revealed over the weekend that he's been fighting skin cancer for months.

Jones, 48, told The Sun on Sunday he first detected "a blackhead or a wart" underneath his eye back in February. He went to the doctor, where tests revealed that the spot was actually melanoma, which is responsible for 75 percent of skin cancer deaths.

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"Cancer is a horrible word to hear," Jones told The Sun. "It frightens the life out of you. I've faced the biggest and ugliest lads on the football field and been in some nasty bar brawls. But this is my toughest and scariest opponent yet."

The actor, who's been seen in "X-Men: The Last Stand" and "Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels," has had two more cancerous lumps removed since his diagnosis. His wife Tanya has also been battling skin cancer, which she believes is a side effect from medications she's been taking since having a heart transplant 26 years ago.

The couple is urging everyone to be proactive and schedule regular checkups.

"When the doctor said I had skin cancer, the first thing I thought was, 'How long have I got?'" Jones told The Sun. "It's weighing very heavily on me all the time. Footballers never put on sunblock and they should all be wearing it. ... Kids should all be wearing it every time they play sport. If you spot something on your skin that doesn't feel right ... get it checked out immediately."

Jones' "X-Men" co-star Hugh Jackman also announced last week that he recently had a spot on his nose removed, which turned out to be basal cell carcinoma.

"[My wife] Deb said to get the mark on my nose checked. Boy, was she right! I had a [basal] cell carcinoma. Please don't be foolish like me. Get yourself checked. And USE sunscreen!!!" the actor posted on Instagram.

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