Shannen Doherty Reveals Stage 4 Cancer Diagnosis

Shannen Doherty shared with ABC News that she has been diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. The news comes three years after she announced she was in remission.

By Jamie Blynn Feb 04, 2020 1:14 PMTags

Shannen Doherty's fight isn't over.

Nearly three years after announcing she had gone into remission, the Beverly Hills, 90210 alum sat down with ABC News to share a heartbreaking health update. "It's going to come out in a matter of days or a week that I have stage 4," she shared. "My cancer came back and that's why I'm here." (In 2015, she revealed she had been diagnosed with breast cancer.)

The 48-year-old admitted she's privately been battling the disease for more than a year, secretly keeping the diagnosis to herself while filming the BH90210 reboot. "I don't think that I've processed it," Doherty, wed to Kurt Iswarienko, said. "It's a bitter pill to swallow in a lot of ways. I definitely have days where I say, ‘Why me?' And then I go, ‘Well why not me? Who else? Who else beside me deserves this?' None of us do. I would say that my first reaction is always concern about how am I going to tell my mom, my husband."

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Heading back to set was difficult, especially following Luke Perry's tragic death in March 2019. "It was so weird for me to be diagnosed and then somebody who was seemingly healthy to go first," she admitted. "It was really shocking and the least I could do to honor him was do that show. I still haven't done enough in my opinion."

"It's a hard one because I thought when I finally do come out I would have worked 16 hours a day and people can look at that and say, 'Oh my God, she can work and other people with stage 4 can work,'" Doherty continued. "Our life doesn't end the minute we get that diagnosis. We still have some living to do."

Her decision to speak out comes amid her lawsuit with insurance company State Farm, who she is suing for allegedly not paying for the damage done to her home after the 2018 Los Angeles wildfires. Her health is detailed in court documents that are set to be released shortly.

"I'd rather people hear it from me," Doherty said. "I don't want it to be twisted. I don't want it to be a court document. I want it to be real and authentic. I want to control the narrative. I want people to know from me."

According to the star, the company should have paid fore more of the damages, which she ultimately covered out of pocket. "You walked into the house and it just reeked of smoke," she said. "I communicated with my insurance company. I called, I got passed around from claims adjuster to claims adjuster. I ended up suing State Farm. The result has been one of the most horrific processes I have ever been through."

(In a statement to ABC News, State Farm said, "We empathize with Ms. Doherty's health issues and wish her a full recovery. We strongly believe we have upheld our commitment to our customer and have paid what we owe not his claim.")

Watch: Shannen Doherty Opens Up About Cancer at Stand Up to Cancer 2018

Though she is "petrified" of what the future may hold, she hopes her fight leaves a lasting legacy. "I want to make an impact," Doherty said "I can make that impact through this lawsuit and by saying enough is enough with big business and corporations running the little person over. It's not fair and I'm taking a stand for all of us. I want to be remembered for something bigger than just me."