Elton John had a secret cancer battle [Photo: PA]

Elton John has revealed his secret battle with prostate cancer and a life-threatening disease that left doctors fearing he had just 24 hours left to live.

The 72-year-old legendary singer has opened up about his health battles in a new autobiography, Me: Elton John Official, which is being serialised in the Daily Mail.

Elton had a terrible time in 2017, when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer and then months later battled a separate life-threatening disease.

He was fortunate that doctors caught the cancer early and Elton opted for surgery over a course of radiation and chemotherapy.

Unfortunately, this left him incontinent and crippled with pain after a complication following the surgery.

Writing in the book, Elton said: "It was prostate cancer. I wasn’t as shocked at hearing the word ‘cancer’ as I might have been.

“They’d caught it early. The oncologist told me I had two options. One was surgery to remove my prostate.

"The other was a course of radiation and chemotherapy that meant I would have to go back to hospital dozens of times. I went straight for the surgery.”

The surgery was deemed a success but Elton found he had problems days later.

Elton John and his husband David Furnish [Photo: Getty]

He continued: "It wasn’t until I arrived in Las Vegas ten days later for a gig at Caesars Palace that I noticed something wasn’t right. As the day progressed, the pain got worse and worse.

"I’ve worn some ridiculous things onstage in my time, but never a giant nappy.

"I don’t know if you’ve ever stood in front of 4,000 cheering fans, singing Candle In The Wind while literally p***ing yourself, but if you haven’t, I can tell you for a fact it’s quite an odd experience.”

Elton, who is married to 56-year-old David Furnish, said that the problems were caused by his lymph nodes and doctors performed a colonoscopy to cure the issue.

It was the life-threatening disease months later that concerned Elton more, after he was hospitalised during a trip to South America.

Recalling the tropical disease, Elton wrote: "The doctors told David I was 24 hours away from death. If the South American tour had gone on for another day that would have been it: brown bread.

"So I was incredibly lucky - although, I have to say, I didn’t feel terribly lucky at the time. I lay awake all night, wondering if I was going to die.”

Elton was in hospital for eleven days and then had seven weeks of recovery, with Elton admitting that he prayed for his survival during that time.