UPDATED: Ex-Iron Maiden Singer Paul Di’Anno Says He’s Not Battling Cancer
Former Iron Maiden frontman Paul Di'Anno has clarified his health issues, confirming that he is not in the middle of another bout with cancer.
"I collapsed at home after coming back from Argentina and a scan found a massive big black shadow on my lungs. I thought I was on my way out, but it turned out to be non-malignant," Di'Anno tells Classic Rock. "It was an abscess that was all infected and the size of a rugby ball. It turns out I've been living with this thing in me for the last few years."
Fellow Iron Maiden alum Blaze Bayley, in an interview with Chile's HumoNegro, had earlier confirmed a cancer diagnosis – adding that that Di'Anno is "doing okay and he's responding to treatment." Di'Anno now says that interview was conducted when his health situation was still unclear.
Jimmy Kay of the Metal Voice was among the first to report that Di'Anno was found to have a non-malignant growth. "The doctors said it was an airborne thing that caused the infection and I could have picked it up anywhere," added Di'Anno, who's been appearing in a wheelchair after double knee-replacement surgery.
Di'Anno was admitted at Salisbury District Hospital in Wiltshire, England, before confirming his discharge on July 1. At that point, however, he didn't elaborate on news of a hospitalization for an undisclosed medical issue back in May. "I had to go into recovery after the operation," Di'Anno now says, "and rather than go back to my home in Sao Paulo, Brazil, I stayed here in England and I'm now in a care home."
This time away forced Di'Anno to call off a previously announced tour of Brazil set for June. He's since canceled a date for next month. "Sorry to say that I will not be appearing at the Palma Rock Festival in Spain this August, as doctors orders are to take it a bit easy since coming out of hospital," Di'Anno said via Facebook on July 4.
Di'Anno was Iron Maiden's turn-of-the-'70s singer, appearing on their first two studio albums between 1978-81. Bayley later took over a two-album span with Iron Maiden during a 1994-99 hiatus for Dickinson.
They've since been part of a series of shared bills over the years, and Bayley remains hopeful they can resume touring in the future. "We've played together many shows around the world — in Russia, Sweden and Australia — and the only places, really, that we haven't done are South America," Bayley said. "So, when he gets better, maybe in a year or so – maybe we'll be able to do a tour like that."
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