Hollywood star Ben Stiller reveals battle with prostate cancer and hails test for saving his life

Ben Stiller Credit: PA

Hollywood star Ben Stiller has revealed he was diagnosed with prostate cancer two years ago, and has praised the test which "saved my life, literally".

The Zoolander star was diagnosed with a growing tumour in 2014 and has hailed the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test which led to his diagnosis following its criticism in the US as it can led to unnecessary "over-treatment", such as surgery or radiation.

However, the 48-year-old argued that men should at least be given the option of having the test so they stand a chance of early detection.

In a blog post the actor stressed he was not offering a scientific point of view on the test, but said without it he would not have been diagnosed as quickly as he was.

Stiller revealed he was diagnosed in June 2014, but following surgery he was cancer-free three months later.

"The three months in between were a crazy roller coaster ride with which about 180,000 men a year in America can identify," he added.

Stiller wrote that immediately after his diagnosis he Googled high-profile people who had survived the disease, such as US Secretary of State John Kerry and actor Robert DeNiro.

Actor Robert DeNiro has also battled prostate cancer. Credit: PA

However, he admitted searching online "people who died of prostate cancer" was a mistake, but that it showed him that he was "incredibly fortunate... because my cancer was detected early enough to treat. And also because my internist gave me a test he didn't have to".

Stiller continued: "If he [his doctor] had waited, as the American Cancer Society recommends, until I was 50, I would not have known I had a growing tumour until two years after I got treated.

"If he had followed the US Preventive Services Task Force guidelines, I would have never gotten tested at all, and not have known I had cancer until it was way too late to treat successfully."