Nick Cannon's youngest child died Sunday after battling brain cancer, the TV personality revealed Tuesday.
The 41-year-old host tearfully announced his 5-month-old son's death on "The Nick Cannon Show," dedicating Tuesday's episode to his "beautiful son Zen." Cannon shares Zen with model Alyssa Scott.
"Over the weekend I lost my youngest son to a condition called hydrocephalus that was pretty much a malignant, invasive midline brain tumor, brain cancer," Cannon said. "It's tough."
Hydrocephalus is the "buildup of fluid in the cavities (ventricles) deep within the brain, according to Mayo Clinic. The excess fluid puts pressure on the brain and can "damage brain tissues and cause a range of brain function problems."
Cannon said his son was about 2 months old when he noticed the newborn was having some breathing issues, which he initially attributed to the newborn's sinuses. Doctors told the host that Zen had fluid building in his head, and the child was eventually diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor.
"Immediately we had to have surgery," Cannon said.
After subsequent surgeries and procedures, Cannon said around Thanksgiving Zen's condition took a turn and the baby's tumor began to grow faster. The actor said his son succumbed to his illness on Sunday, but reflected on the time they spent watching the sunrise together that morning.
"This weekend I made a valid effort to spend the most quality time I could spend with Zen," Cannon said. "Holding my son for the last time, it was a beautiful setting."
Cannon shared one of the last photos he took of his son on Wednesday's show. The photo which he chose as the "picture of the day" is a shot of Zen in his mother's arms on the beach.
"Usually on Sundays I kinda handle everything I need to handle with the family and then I fly back to New York so I can be here (for the show)," Cannon said. "By the time I got in the car and was headed to the airport, I had to turn around."
"Not only did we see the sunrise we got to see the sunset, too" he added.
Zen, whom Cannon shares with model Alyssa Scott, is the youngest of Cannon's children. He shares his oldest children, 10-year-old twins Moroccan and Monroe, with Mariah Carey.
"I didn't know how I was gonna handle today but I just really wanted to grieve with my family," Cannon said, gesturing to his studio audience. "I prayed for the miracle of God's strength, and that's why I'm here with you guys today."
Cannon said after revealing the death of his son on air he got a lot of feedback from family and friends asking him why he's at work.
"To me, this isn't work. This is love." Cannon said Wednesday, adding that returning to the show is "therapeutic."
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Nick Cannon's son dead: 5-month-old Zen battled brain cancer