The Princess of Wales says she is undergoing treatment for cancer
The Princess of Wales says she is undergoing treatment for cancer

  • By Sean Coughlan
  • Royal Correspondent

video caption,

Watch: The full video message from the Princess of Wales

The Princess of Wales says she is in the early stages of treatment after tests revealed cancer.

In a video statement, Catherine said it was a “huge shock” after an “incredibly difficult few months”.

But she sent a positive message, saying: “I’m fine and getting stronger every day.”

Details of the cancer have not been released, but Kensington Palace says it is confident the princess will make a full recovery.

The princess’ statement explained that when she had abdominal surgery in January, it was not known that she had cancer.

“However, tests after the operation revealed the presence of cancer. Because of this, my medical team advised me to undergo a course of preventive chemotherapy and I am now in the early stages of this treatment,” said the princess.

Chemotherapy started at the end of February. The palace says it will not share additional private medical information, including the type of cancer.

The 42-year-old princess said her thoughts are with everyone who has been affected by cancer, adding: “To everyone facing this disease, no matter what form, please don’t lose faith or hope. You are not alone.”

Katherine said her recovery from surgery in January for an undisclosed condition has taken time and now the priority is comforting her family.

“William and I are doing our best to process and manage this privately for the sake of our young family.”

The princess added: “It took us time to explain everything to George, Charlotte and Louis in a way that was suitable for them and to reassure them that I would be fine.”

She said the family now needed “some time, space and privacy”.

The King and Queen were briefed on the Princess’s health news ahead of Friday’s announcement – and King Charles himself has also been undergoing treatment for cancer.

Catherine and Prince William are now not expected to appear with the royal family at Easter and there will be no early return to official duties for the princess.

The palace also said Prince William’s sudden absence from the February 27 memorial service was due to the discovery of Catherine’s cancer diagnosis.

image source, BBC Studios

Image caption,

The Princess of Wales is pictured in a video message announcing she is undergoing cancer treatment

The couple have faced intense public speculation and a social media frenzy about her health since her surgery in January. She has not attended formal events since Christmas.

In her video statement, she spoke of the support from her family: “Having William by my side is also a great source of comfort and reassurance.

“As well as the love, support and kindness that has been shown by so many of you. It means so much to both of us.”

Kensington Palace said the video of the princess was filmed on Wednesday by BBC Studios, the BBC’s production arm.

In a statement, BBC News said: “Along with other media outlets, BBC News was informed by Kensington Palace of the announcement this afternoon.”

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said Catherine had shown “tremendous bravery” in her statement, wishing her a “speedy recovery”.

He said: “In recent weeks she has come under intense scrutiny and has been treated unfairly by certain parts of the media around the world and on social media.

“When it comes to health issues, like anyone else, she needs privacy to focus on her treatment and be with her loving family.”

Labor leader Sir Keir Starmer said his thoughts were with the royal family, adding he was “encouraged” by Catherine’s “upbeat tone and her message of faith and hope”.

He said: “Any cancer diagnosis is shocking. But I can only imagine the added stress of receiving this news amid the ominous speculation we’ve seen in recent weeks.”

William and Catherine have a “right to privacy and, like any parent, will wait until they choose the right moment to tell their children.”

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