Eric Idle reveals battle with pancreatic cancer

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Eric Idle has survived a battle with pancreatic cancer.

In an essay for TIME published on Thursday, the Monty Python star revealed that he was diagnosed with the "lethal" form of the disease around three years ago.

However, as the tumour was spotted during a regular check-up, and was at an early stage, doctors were able to remove it in surgery.

"It's odd to think that had he not called for that extra test I might have been walking around without knowing this time bomb was ticking away inside me," he wrote. "Just carried on with my year, making plans, looking good and healthy with this growing inside."

Idle has recovered from the surgery and the disease has not reoccurred.

In light of his experience, the British star is starting the Bright Side Fund at Stand Up To Cancer to raise funds for pancreatic cancer research. He also wants to urge people to undergo screening tests if they are concerned about their health in any way.

"I want to encourage people in families at high risk of pancreatic cancer to explore the newer tests available for detecting the disease early. So please talk to your doctor to understand which screening tests may be right for you and tell your loved ones to do the same. Help me help others like me to survive," the 79-year-old continued.

The news comes after Idle was eliminated from the U.S. TV series, The Masked Singer, earlier this month.