Oliver Sacks has terminal cancer, and just months to live

Oliver Sacks Is Dying as He Lived: Brilliantly
Oliver Sacks Is Dying as He Lived: Brilliantly


Oliver Sacks, the beloved author and world-famous neurologist, has announced that he has terminal liver cancer and just months to live, according to a op-ed he wrote for the New York Times.

The 81-year-old scientist learned that he had a rare tumor in his eye nine years ago, and it was treated with radiation and removal of the growth. This particular kind of cancer is unlikely to spread-- only 2 percent of these tumors spread cancer to other parts of the body. But just weeks ago Sacks learned that it indeed had spread, and now occupies over a third of his liver.

Sacks is known for his best-selling books such as "The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat," which describes in detail stories of individuals who struggle with neurological hurdles. "Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain" excavated how music affects all people, but particularly those with severe neurological conditions. His work pushed to make clinical understanding of the brain more accessible to the masses.

In a column in the Times' opinion page, he expressed gratitude for his health and that despite his diagnosis, he still feels "intensely alive," but also made clear that his life isn't yet over. He ended his op-ed by telling readers: "Above all, I have been a sentient being, a thinking animal, on this beautiful planet, and that in itself has been an enormous privilege and adventure."