Poison Drummer Rikki Rockett Says He’s Battling Oral Cancer: “I’ve Had 35 Rounds of Radiation”

Drummer of the band Poison, Rikki Rockett
Rikki Rockett revealed he's battling cancer. Mike Windle/FilmMagic

Poison drummer Rikki Rockett disclosed on Tuesday, December 15, that he’s currently battling oral cancer.

Rockett, 54, told Eddie Trunk on his radio show, Eddie Trunk Live, that a tumor was found at the base of his tongue in June.

“Where I’m at now is, I went last week for my follow-up,” Rockett said. “Both doctors said I’m doing excellent, and they both have excellent prognoses. In early February, I get my PET scan, and that’s the end-all. That tells you if there’s any activity. They both said they suspect that there won’t be, and so I’ve got fingers crossed.”

The musician went on to explain that his particular type of cancer is very treatable.

“I did 35 rounds of radiation,” he said. “It was five days a week for seven weeks. But I went, ‘Okay, this is what I’m gonna do. I wanna beat it, so I’m just gonna go head first into this.’”

C.C. DeVille, Brett Michaels, Rikki Rockett and Bobby Dall
C.C. DeVille, Brett Michaels, Rikki Rockett and Bobby Dall arrive at the Los Angeles premiere of "Rock Of Ages" at Grauman's Chinese Theatre in 2012. Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic

Rockett also admitted that battling cancer has been the hardest thing he’s had to endure in his life.

“At the end of the day, it was really the worst thing that you can go through,” he said. “I’ve had a decent life. We all go through our stuff. So for me, it was really just a battle that I had to get through, and I got to the point where I couldn’t really talk. I had 16 canker sores in my mouth at one time."

As for why Rockett kept his cancer diagnosis quiet?

“I wanted to see how I would do with the treatment,” the rocker said. “I don’t want to hear anybody’s horror stories. I’m just gonna continue to get better and feel better. There’s nothing that looks like it’s there anymore. It looks like it’s in remission.”

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