Former senator Graham Richardson will go under the knife on Wednesday in a marathon operation to remove four organs, as he battles cancer.
The former Labor politician remained upbeat on the eve of the surgery, in which doctors will remove his prostate, rectum, bladder, bowel and sciatic nerve in a procedure anticipated to take 18 hours.
"Don't worry - as the Terminator says - `I'll be back'," Mr Richardson told viewers of his Sky television program Richo and Jones on Tuesday night.
After the operation he will be forced to rely on a bladder bag and a colostomy bag, as well as a walking stick.
"I'm going to have two bags, which is not something that everyone would like but that's the way it's going to go," he told co-presenter Alan Jones.
The former Keating and Hawke government minister said it had got to the stage where he couldn't put the operation off any longer.
He thanked viewers for their well wishes, saying he'd been overwhelmed and amazed by the support.