Veteran AFL reporter Mark Stevens has revealed his shock cancer diagnosis in the hope that he can help others.
The Channel 7 reporter was recently diagnosed with bowel cancer after experiencing symptoms in the AFL's quarantine hub in Queensland last year.
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Stevens admitted he delayed a trip to the doctor to get checked out, partly due to the havoc created by COVID-19 in Melbourne.
“Eventually I went to the doctor and explained my symptoms and he said ‘book in for a colonoscopy’ and then they found a polyp," he told 7News.
“I found out about a week later that it was cancerous and the cancer had spread into the wall of the colon."
He is now recovering at home after major surgery to remove the cancer.
Sporting community rallies around Mark Stevens
Stevens received the news just minutes before going on-air for a love cross for the 6pm bulletin.
He did the cross anyway before heading home to weigh up his options.
Stevens had surgery in late March and has avoided further treatment.
But the father-of-two believes his case should be a stark warning to others.
"The first thing the surgeons told me when I woke up was 'thank god you came in when you did'," he said.
“Effectively the message is get yourself checked because if I had left it, it could have obviously been a lot worse."
The Aussie sporting community rallied around Stevens after learning of his diagnosis on Sunday.
"So glad you caught it early, mate. Sending health and happiness," wrote former Hockeyroos and AFLW player Georgie Parker.
Fellow journalist Nick Smart wrote: "Scary stuff. All the best, Stevo."
While Aussie tennis legend Todd Woobridge tweeted: "Glad things are on the mend.
"Good opportunity to remind everyone to “Do the Test”. It just might save your life."
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