Eddie Van Halen suffering from throat cancer contracted after years of sucking on his metal guitar

13 Oct 2019 | by Diana Kendall

Eddie Van Halen is suffering from which he believes he contracted after years of sucking on his metal guitar pick, according to reports. 

  • Eddie Van Halen suffering from throat cancer contracted after years of sucking on his metal guitar

Eddie Van Halen, the veteran rocker, 64, was diagnosed with throat cancer nearly 20 years ago and has been travelling between the United States and Germany for treatment, TMZ reports. 

He had a third of his tongue removed in 2000 and had reportedly been declared cancer free in 2002 but has now been to Germany to get radiation treatment over the last five years.  

The Van Halen star, who was a 'heavy smoker', is said to blame holding the pick in his mouth while on stage for his diagnosis.

A source told TMZ 'for the most part it's worked to keep the disease in check' and he is 'doing okay'. 

Eddie told Billboard in 2015: 'I used metal picks – they're brass and copper – which I always held in my mouth, in the exact place where I got the tongue cancer.

'Plus, I basically live in a recording studio that's filled with electromagnetic energy. So that's one theory. I mean, I was smoking and doing a lot of drugs and a lot of everything. But at the same time, my lungs are totally clear. This is just my own theory, but the doctors say it's possible.' 

Eddie's friend and TOTO guitarist Steve Lukather said 'health issues' were stopping the group – who are also made up of singer David Lee Roth, Eddie's brother Alex Van Halen, who plays drums, and Eddie's son Wolfgang Van Halen on bass guitar - from touring. 

The band last performed in October 2015 at at L.A.'s Hollywood Bowl and there were rumors the band's classic lineup were set to perform for the first time since 1984.  

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