Toby Keith, the beloved country star, has been garnering attention for his health since announcing his diagnosis with stomach cancer in June 2022.

Fans have been eagerly awaiting updates on his condition and prognosis. Despite facing this challenging disease, Keith has remained optimistic and even made his first post-diagnosis performance at the People’s Choice Country Awards on September 28th.

What Illness Does Toby Keith Have?

In the fall of 2021, Keith shared that he had been diagnosed with stomach cancer. After six months of chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery, he expressed his gratitude for the progress he had made and his excitement to spend quality time with his family.

Stomach cancer, also known as gastric cancer, occurs when cancer cells develop in any part of the stomach. The most common type is adenocarcinoma, which starts in the mucus-producing cells of the innermost stomach lining.

Stomach cancer affects men and people of color more than women or whites. Several factors can increase your risk, such as genetics, certain medical conditions, poor diet, tobacco use, and environmental factors.

Common symptoms include difficulty swallowing, abdominal pain, bloating, loss of appetite, nausea, heartburn, indigestion, vomiting, weight loss, fatigue, and black stools.

How Is Toby Keith Doing?

During his appearance at the People’s Choice Country Awards, Toby Keith shared that he was feeling pretty good. He acknowledged that his journey has been a roller coaster, with ups and downs, but he was in good spirits that day.

Keith performed “Don’t Let the Old Man In” from Clint Eastwood’s movie “The Mule” during the event, a song he chose because of its relevance to his cancer battle.

In June 2023, Keith revealed that his tumor had shrunk, indicating a positive trend in his health. He expressed his hope to start performing again soon. While the road to recovery hasn’t been easy, he has been determined to regain his strength and return to the stage.

What Is Toby Keith’s Prognosis?

Although Keith hasn’t shared specific details about his prognosis or the stage of his cancer, he did mention that his treatment involved chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery for at least six months. In some cases, radiation and chemotherapy are used before surgery to shrink the cancer and make it easier to remove. They can also be used after surgery to eliminate any remaining cancer cells.

Early-stage stomach cancers have a higher chance of being curable, but unfortunately, most cases are diagnosed at later stages. Despite the challenges, Keith remains optimistic about his prognosis, with his tumor shrinking by one-third during treatment. He eagerly awaits his next scan, confident that his health will continue to improve.

Toby Keith’s unwavering spirit and determination to overcome his illness serve as an inspiration to many. As his fans, we stand with him in support and eagerly await his return to the stage.

Keith was born in Clinton, Oklahoma, to Carolyn Joan (née Ross) and Hubert K. Covel Jr.[4][5] He has a sister and a brother. The family lived in Fort Smith, Arkansas, for a few years when Keith was in grade school, but moved to Moore, Oklahoma (a suburb of Oklahoma City), when he was still young.[1][5]

Before the family moved to Moore, he visited his grandmother in Fort Smith during the summers. His grandmother owned Billie Garner’s Supper Club in Fort Smith,[1] where Keith became interested in the musicians who came there to play.[5]

He did odd jobs around the supper club and started getting up on the bandstand to play with the band. He got his first guitar at the age of eight.[5] After the family moved to Moore, Keith attended Highland West Junior High and Moore High School, where he played defensive end on the football team