King Charles III has been diagnosed with cancer and began outpatient treatment in early February, Buckingham Palace said in a statement last week. According to the palace, the disease was discovered in January when the king underwent a “corrective procedure” for a benign prostate enlargement.
Though the palace did not release any further information about the king’s diagnosis or prognosis, they said the 75-year-old monarch will postpone his public engagements under advice from his doctors. “He remains wholly positive about his treatment and looks forward to returning to full public duty as soon as possible,” read the palace’s statement. “His Majesty has chosen to share his diagnosis to prevent speculation and in the hope it may assist public understanding for all those around the world who are affected by cancer.”
On Saturday, the palace issued a statement from the king, sharing his gratitude for support from the public. “I would like to express my most heartfelt thanks for the many messages of support and good wishes I have received in recent days,” he said. “As all those who have been affected by cancer will know, such kind thoughts are the greatest comfort and encouragement.” The next day, the king made his first public appearance since the palace announced his diagnosis. He and Queen Camilla waved at onlookers as they walked to St. Mary Magdalene’s, the church located on the royals’ estate at Sandringham.
In the weeks leading up to the King’s diagnosis, two other members of the royal family announced they were dealing with health issues. In mid-January, the palace announced that Kate Middleton was hospitalized following a “planned abdominal surgery” and was expected to face a three-month recovery at home. There were no further details about why the Princess of Wales needed the procedure, but her office at Kensington Palace said her condition was noncancerous, NBC reported. She was released from the hospital after nearly two weeks and is expected to resume her public engagements during Easter. Meanwhile, Sarah Ferguson — the Duchess of York and Prince Andrew’s ex-wife — announced in late January that she had been diagnosed with melanoma. The diagnosis comes less than a year after Ferguson underwent a mastectomy and reconstructive surgery to treat her breast cancer.
This post has been updated.