Leonard Nimoy, the actor known to millions of people around the world for playing Mr. Spock in Star Trek, has revealed that he has lung disease. The actor revealed that he has COPD in a post to his official Twitter account on January 29th, 2014, where he also urged his followers to quit smoking.
Nimoy, who was a cast member of the original Star Trek television series and movies, as well as the first installment of JJ Abrams’ cinematic reboot, further amplified his statement in another tweet 8 days later on February 6, 2014: “Smokers, please understand. If you quit after you’re diagnosed with lung damage it’s too late. Grandpa says learn my lesson. Quit now.”
I quit smoking 30 yrs ago. Not soon enough. I have COPD. Grandpa says, quit now!! LLAP
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder, or COPD, is a progressive disease (meaning it gets worse over time) of the lungs that affects one’s ability to breathe. It generally refers to some form of degeneration of the tubes and sacs that compose the lungs. It includes two main conditions: emphysema and chronic bronchitis. In emphysema, the air sacs in the lungs that allow oxygen in the air to pass into the blood stream are damaged, making them less elastic, or they are destroyed, creating fewer, larger sacs that are less efficient. In chronic bronchitis, the linings of the tubes and sacs are constantly inflamed, causing a thick mucus to form that makes breathing more difficult. People with COPD can have one condition or both. COPD is a major cause of disability in the United States and it has no cure. Cigarette smoking is its leading cause.
Details about Nimoy’s condition and long term prognosis are not known at present. His attitude seems to be positive, based on a recent comment on Twitter: “I’m doing OK. Just can’t walk distances. Love my life,family, friends and followers.”
I'm doing OK. Just can't walk distances. Love my life,family, friends and followers. LLAP
He added that he has recorded a taped segment for Star Trek Fest, saying “Just taped my comments for Star Trek Fest to be aired on EPIX Feb. 16th. Still enjoying my life.” (We’ll have more details on the EPIX Star Trek Fest soon.) No reaction yet about his illness from his Star Trek co-star and friend William Shatner.
Photos of the 82-year-old being pushed in a wheelchair that had a breathing apparatus attached at a New York hospital a month ago were recently posted by news outlets, causing some speculation on the actor’s health.
Back in September, Nimoy joined fellow Star Trek alumn Patrick Stewart (from Star Trek: The Next Generation) and The Hobbit’s Ian McKellen in Coney Island, Brooklyn, NY, for a photo op (see below), appearing to be in good health.
Patrick Stewart, Leonard Nimoy, Ian McKellen in Coney Island, Brooklyn, NY, September 2013
Live long and prosper, Leonard Nimoy. We’re all hoping and praying for you!!!!