Michael Douglas did not say he developed throat cancer because of a HPV infection, his publicist has said.
Michael Douglas, 68, who was diagnosed with cancer three years ago, was quoted as telling The Guardian his strain of cancer had been caused by HPV (human papillomavirus).
But in a statement Michael Douglas’ spokesman sought to clarify that the actor was not talking about his own cancer.
The World Health Organization (WHO) says HPV can cause cancer of the head and neck.
In his statement on Monday, Allen Burry said: “No. He [Michael Douglas] did not say oral s** was the cause of his cancer.”
The publicist referred to medical evidence linking oral s** to head neck cancer, adding “but [Michael Douglas] did not say it was the cause to his specific cancer”.
The Guardian stood by its story, releasing audio of the interview.
In the newspaper’s article on Sunday, Michael Douglas was asked if, given his illness, he regretted his years of smoking and drinking.
Michael Douglas was quoted as saying: “No. Because without wanting to get too specific, this particular cancer is caused by HPV, which actually comes about from cunni***gus.”
The actor continued: “I did worry if the stress caused by my son’s incarceration didn’t help trigger it. But yeah, it’s a s**ually transmitted disease that causes cancer.”
Michael Douglas’ illness is now in remission, following treatment.
His son, Cameron, is serving a prison sentence for d**g possession and dealing.
Michael Douglas, who is married to Welsh actress Catherine Zeta-Jones, was treated in the early 1990s for an addiction which some at the time claimed to be s**.
Michael Douglas himself denied this and said he was in rehab for alcohol abuse.