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Small cell carcinoma is a cancer that commonly occurs in lungs, but can also manifest in the prostate or gastrointestinal tract

By Gabrielle Chung
January 21, 2021 05:24 PM
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Dustin Diamond is continuing to seek treatment for cancer.

A representative for Diamond, 44, confirms to PEOPLE on Thursday that the Saved by the Bell alum had started chemotherapy for stage 4 small cell carcinoma, a cancer that commonly occurs in lungs, but can also manifest in the prostate or gastrointestinal tract.

A second round of chemotherapy is being scheduled and Diamond will also begin physical therapy in the near future, according to NBC News.

"Dustin is looking forward to spending more time with his girlfriend, playing his bass guitar/video games, as well as making videos for his fans on social media," Diamond's rep, Roger Paul, told the outlet.

dustin diamond
Dustin Diamond
| Credit: Chris Polk/FilmMagic

A rep for Diamond confirmed his cancer diagnosis to PEOPLE last week, saying that the actor is "in a lot of pain."

Diamond's team also announced the diagnosis in statement shared on his Facebook page, reading: At this time we can confirm that Dustin does have cancer. Dustin will disclose more information once it is available and a plan moving forward is made."

"We ask everyone to respect Dustin's privacy during this difficult time," his team added. "All positivity and prayers are appreciated."

PEOPLE confirmed earlier this month that the actor had been hospitalized with a then-unknown illness.

"Dustin is in the hospital and the medical teams are doing tests to find out more," a rep for Diamond said at the time. "Everyone is hoping for a speedy recovery."

Dustin Diamond
Dustin Diamond
| Credit: Noel Vasquez/Getty

Diamond is best known for playing the role of Screech in the 1990s teen sitcom Saved by the Bell. Though the show has made a comeback with the recent reboot on NBC's Peacock, Diamond was not involved in the new series. 

Since news of his diagnosis broke, Diamond's former Saved by the Bell castmates have shown their support for the star.

"God Bless & Prayers Up!" Mario Lopez first wrote in the comments section of PEOPLE's Instagram post, before sharing a side-by-side snap of himself and Diamond on his own page.

"I connected with Dustin earlier this evening and although the news of his diagnosis is heartbreaking, we remain positive that he'll overcome this," Lopez captioned the photo. "Praying for him & his family and for a speedy recovery. God Bless."

Lark Voorhies also shared a throwback shot of Diamond on her account, writing in the caption, "I'd like to take the time to send special love and special best wishes to Dustin Diamond, who is one of my dearest friends."

"Dustin, all the many in your close circle who know you to be the great person that you are, are truly pulling for you and praying for the best outcome," she wrote.