Reports of former "Charlie's Angels" star Farrah Fawcett's weight plummeting to a mere 86 pounds shocked the nation earlier this month, but her doctor said today the rumors are false.
"She is not 86 pounds," Dr. Lawrence Piro told "Good Morning America" in his first television interview discussing her condition. "She is 101 pounds. She has challenges every day with the fight with cancer. As long as she is able to fight, she will keep fighting."
Piro said that is a "reasonable weight" under the circumstances.
Piro, of the Los Angeles Clinic and Research Institute, has been treating Fawcett for her recurring anal cancer and said the 5-foot, 6-inch star has been up on her feet and even recently celebrated the birthday of her nearly 30-year boyfriend Ryan O'Neal.
"There was a great birthday party at her house and they participated and she had a very nice piece of cake," Piro said. "She was joyful and happy to be a part of it."
Piro said Fawcett, 62, found some strength in her relationship with O'Neal.
"It has been an amazing relationship and Ryan has been an amazing companion and partner for her," Piro said. "He has been with her all the way through this, at her side, what ever she needs. It is something that all of us could only hope for if we had to walk in this kind of path, someone who has been so dedicated as Ryan has been to Farrah."
Although Fawcett's particular kind of cancer strikes only about 5,000 people a year, Piro said Fawcett never complains.
"Never once have I heard her ask, 'Why her,' which is a very natural thing to ask. But she has never perceived herself of being in a position of life where she assumed she should be immune," he said. "She has courage and she has strength. She can do what so many people aspire to do and what the journey with cancer teaches you is the ability to look in the face of fear and to not shutter."
Fawcett's son, Redmond O'Neal, initially claimed the actress' weight had plummeted to 86 pounds during a court appearance last week.
The 24-year-old cited the state of his ailing mother's health before Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Scott Millington.
Millington transferred two felony drug cases against O'Neal to a court that could send him to a stringent rehab program because O'Neal said Fawcett's cancer battle is motivating him to stay clean.
"I'm just really upset with myself," O'Neal said at one point during the hearing.
He acknowledged last week a probation violation to a 2008 drug conviction and was in court Friday for sentencing. O'Neal has two other drug cases, including one filed after his recent arrest.
O'Neal and his father, Fawcett's longtime companion, were arrested in September at the actor's Malibu home when deputies performing a probation sweep say they found methamphetamine at the house. Ryan O'Neal is in an 18-month drug diversion program after pleaded guilty to a felony drug charge.
The apparently exaggerated revelation that Fawcett's weight is staggeringly low came little more than a week after she was released from an Los Angeles-area hospital where she was recovering from internal bleeding caused by her cancer.
"She's walking and in great spirits and looking forward to celebrating Easter at home," Piro told People magazine earlier this month, which first reported Fawcett's release. "Her home has been stocked with her favorite teas and food, and she's looking forward to enjoying them."