Kate Middleton Reveals She Has Cancer

The Prince And Princess Of Wales Visit Boston - Day 2
Photo: Kirsty O’Connor/Pool/Getty Images

Following weeks of speculation about Kate Middleton’s recent absence from public life, she announced on Friday that she has cancer. In a prerecorded video message posted on Instagram, Kate said that she is currently undergoing chemotherapy after cancerous cells were found during her “planned abdominal surgery” earlier this year.

“In January, I underwent major abdominal surgery in London, and at the time, it was thought that my condition was noncancerous,” Kate said. “The surgery was successful; however, tests after the operation found cancer had been present.” She said that she is currently in the early stages of a course of preventative chemotherapy.

The palace had previously announced that the Princess of Wales was recovering from abdominal surgery and likely would not be participating in public events until Easter. “This of course came as a huge shock,” she said, “and William and I have been doing everything we can to process and manage this privately for the sake of our young family. As you can imagine, this has taken time.”

In the video, Kate explained the heightened privacy around her over the past few months. “It has taken me time to recover from major surgery in order to start my treatment, but most importantly, it has taken us time to explain everything to George, Charlotte, and Louis in a way that is appropriate for them and to reassure them that I’m going to be okay,” she said.

Kate did not specify what type of cancer she was diagnosed with. “We hope that you will understand that, as a family, we now need some time, space, and privacy while I complete my treatment,” Kate said.

This is only the latest piece of health news to come out of the royal family this year. In February, Buckingham Palace announced that King Charles had been diagnosed with cancer and was undergoing treatment. Though he also did not specify what type of cancer he had, according to the palace, his disease was discovered during an unrelated surgery for a benign prostate enlargement.

In a statement, a spokesperson for King Charles said that he is “so proud of Catherine for her courage in speaking as she did.” The spokesperson noted that the king has been in close contact with Kate over the past few weeks and that both him and Queen Camilla “will continue to offer their love and support to the whole family through this difficult time.”

This post has been updated.

Kate Middleton Reveals She Has Cancer