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Black Eyed Peas' Taboo opens up on cancer battle

ShowbizBy Sunday World
Black Eyed Peas' Taboo opens up on cancer battle

Black Eyed Peas member Taboo has opened up on his battle with testicular cancer.

The 41-year-old rapper - real name Jaime Luis Gomez - has revealed a trip to the emergency room when he thought he had the flu ended up saving him from stage two testicular cancer.

Speaking to People magazine, Taboo said: "It all started with a pain in my back and abdomen. I was so busy working that I wasn't worried about it, but I went to the emergency room to get checked out."

After a series of tests in 2014, doctors diagnosed the 'Where Is the Love?' hitmaker with the stage two cancer - which means the cancerous cells have spread from the testicle to nearby lymph nodes in the abdomen or pelvis.

Taboo says that his fellow Black Eyed Peas bandmate will.i.am "instantly reached out" to help him.

He continued: "The very next day I went into surgery to have the 'mother ship' removed. But my fight had just begun.

"My family and the group were all in shock, but will.i.am instantly reached out to a great doctor who helped me figure out a treatment plan. I was racing against the clock."

After 12 weeks of "aggressive" chemotherapy, the 'I Gotta Feeling' musician - who is joined in the band by will.i.am, apl.de.ap, and Fergie - has been cancer-free for two years, and is hoping to use his experience to "inspire others" in his position.

He said: "There were times that I wanted to give up, but I became inspired by sports figures who have gone through similar battles. I began channelling my energy into the thing that keeps me alive and spirited: music. I wanted to share my story and inspire others like those who had inspired me."

Taboo admits he chose to keep his diagnoses quiet until he could be sure he'd "made it out the other side stronger", and has since penned lyrics about his battle with the disease.

He said: "I had chemo brain and kept fading in and out, but my team kept me focused because they knew how important it was."