Nick Cannon Explains Why He Refused to Treat Son’s Brain Tumor With Chemotherapy

The ‘Nick Cannon Show’ host says his own painful experience with chemotherapy to fight autoimmune disease lupus made him decide against using the treatment for his baby.

AceShowbizNick Cannon opened up on details of his baby son Zen’s struggle with aggressive brain tumor. The TV host decided against using chemotherapy to treat the baby’s illness. He explained in the new interview why he and baby mama Alyssa Scott made the difficult decision to forgo the procedure.

“We started asking, ‘Is there a way to prevent this? If not, how long do we have?’ ” he recalled in a chat with PEOPLE. “The conversations quickly turned to, ‘How can we give him the best life for the time that he does have?’ It could be weeks, it could be months, it could be years.”

The grieving father said his own experience with chemotherapy to treat his autoimmune disease lupus ultimately led the star and the baby’s mom to forgo the treatment for their infant child.

“We were having quality-of-life conversations,” he explained. “We could have had that existence where he would’ve had to live in the hospital, hooked up to machines, for the rest of the time. From someone who’s had to deal with chemotherapy before, I know that pain. To see that happen to a 2-month-old, I didn’t want that. I didn’t want him to suffer.”

Instead, the parents focused on keeping little Zen “as happy as he could possibly be.” “We focused on Disneyland, our favorite place,” Nick said. “Every month we would celebrate his birthday, just really seeing it as a victory every time he had a milestone that he was still here with us.”

He remembered one of the heartbreaking moments as he witnessed baby Zen struggle with cancer. “He was gasping for air,” Nick recalled. “We’d wake up, and he wouldn’t be breathing for maybe five to 10 seconds at a time, and then he’d let out a huge gasp. You could see it frightened him. It was the scariest thing I’ve ever experienced.”

Knowing that it could be their last day with their baby, the parents decided to spend a peaceful time together at the beach. “I was like, ‘We have to watch the sun rise and just be there with him one last time,’ ” Nick said. “It was beautiful.”

Despite doing everything he could to ease his baby’s pain, Nick Cannon still felt guilty. “My heart is shattered,” he opened up. “I wish I could have done more, spent more time with him, taken more pictures. I wish I could have hugged him longer.”

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