Valerie Harper's brain cancer 'close to remission'

The actress is holding her ground in her fight against a rare -- and terminal -- form of brain cancer.
Posted By GABRIELLE LEVY, UPI.com   |   Aug. 29, 2013 at 1:12 PM
1 of 4
| License Photo

Valerie Harper's doctor got be the bearer of good news, grading the 74-year-old actress's brain cancer prognosis.

"I'd say that we're getting pretty close to a remission," said Harper's neuro-oncologist Dr. Jeremy Rudnick. "It defies the odds."

Harper was diagnosed with leptomeningeal carinomatosis, a form of brain cancer that attacks the membranes surrounding the brain, that was expected to be terminal.

But "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" actress, who is featured in an hour-long documentary on NBC September 19, has bought herself more time.

Rudnick cautions Harper and her husband, Tony Cacciotti, that the good news still comes with a caveat: the cancer will probably develop resistance to the therapy, and that she is still terminal.

"It's not a matter of if," said Rudnick, "it's a matter of when."

Still, Harper can't help but be pleased by the good news.

"Going from having three months to live, or less; we're into our sixth month," Cacciotti said, "and now there's even hope beyond right now we're looking at...."

"We're looking at Christmas!" said Harper.

Related UPI Stories
Top Stories
Why the fake braces trend may be dangerous for users
Jared Leto 'stopped eating' for his 'Dallas Buyer's Club' role
Kelly LeBrock arrested for DUI
Gisele Bundchen, Tom Brady drop $14M on Manhattan home
Brandi Brandt faces drug charges in Australia