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Apr 17, 2012 6:46 AM by Kate Richards

Ryan O'Neal says he has stage 2 cancer

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Ryan O'Neal says the prognosis is positive for his recovery from recently diagnosed Stage 2 prostate cancer.

The 70-year-old actor said in a statement released through his publicist on Monday that he was "shocked and stunned by the news" but feels fortunate the disease was caught early. He said his doctors expect him to make a full recovery.

Higher stage numbers mean more extensive disease, with Stage 4 being the highest, according to the National Cancer Institute.

O'Neal said he is grateful for the support of his friends and family. He also advocates regular exams because early detection is the best defense against prostate cancer.

The actor's memoir about his romance with Farrah Fawcett, "Both of Us: My Life With Farrah," will be published on May 1.

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