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Jean-Pierre Pernaut: his radiotherapy brought him to the ground


Francid and transparent, this is how Jean-Pierre Pernaut wants to talk about his lung cancer, to better break the taboos surrounding the disease. In Paris Match, he retains his optimism, even if we can guess the physical and psychological suffering, evoking in particular “a big fatigue” general. “Last week, I was still exhausted,” he admits. For a month and a half, my form has not been dazzling. I cannot walk for long or stand for long. But things are getting better and better… ”

The fault in particular with the radiotherapy treatment which he underwent recently, to try to eliminate a tumor of 3.5 cm on the left lung. “Rays sent in high massive dose to the tenth of a millimeter, to burn out this tumor as quickly as possible”, he explains in Paris Match. He describes in particular “a huge white robot” which “turns around you for forty-five minutes and pounded your tumor very precisely. You are lying down, you are listening to music, you do not feel anything… ”It was afterwards that fatigue came to strike down a Jean-Pierre Pernaut who was already quite weakened by a severe operation two months earlier.

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Five weeks immobilized

The galley began in May, when he was detected a cancerous tumor on the right lung. “It’s heavy to learn this news, I took a big blow on the head, without collapsing”, says the journalist, leaving his wife to announce it to their two children, Lou and Tom. He then took different opinions, including that of his eldest daughter Julia, a surgeon. In early July, he underwent an operation with partial removal of the organ. “Julia reassured me, it is nevertheless a heavy operation, he explains in Paris Match. We open the thorax, then we spread the ribs to go and take a pulmonary lobe. I woke up three days later. He then remained three weeks in the hospital before being able to return to his home. “I spent five weeks at home, on my sofa, without being able to move too much because of the physical pain…”

At the time, there was no question of communicating about the disease and having paparazzi on the trail. Like Michel Drucker last year, he decides to be hospitalized under a false identity to avoid any leak. “I did not want my medical file to roam everywhere …” He simply warns the family circle and its bosses from TF1 and LCI. Has he thought of the worst? “When you are told the diagnosis, you can collapse, think of an inevitable end because it is crap. We must not. Doctors are fighting: it’s up to us, the patients, to keep morale up. That’s what Nathalie keeps telling me. “And to add:” My mother taught me that you should never lament your fate. Oddly enough, or not, I married a woman who looks like him… ”

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Facing the disease together, this is the method adopted from the outset by his wife Nathalie Marquay, who overcame acute leukemia at a young age. In Gala, who opens its pages to him, she recognizes that this is “the biggest fight” of their life, even if they have both already faced “serious health problems”. “Sometimes I wish I could cry to release all this stress, this anger, these anxieties, but I can’t. I think my subconscious remains blocked, ”she continues, referring to the suffering that caregivers supporting their loved ones can also feel. “I have the feeling that I am carrying everything on my shoulders. I haven’t had time to think about myself for a few months. I forget myself. But I’m not complaining, obviously […] I’ll take care of myself when Jean-Pierre is better. “


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