Sarah Ferguson reveals she had single mastectomy after routine checkup led to shock breast cancer diagnosis

FILE PHOTO: Sarah, Duchess of York, attends the premiere of the film "Marlowe" in London, Britain, March 16, 2023. REUTERS/Maja Smiejkowska/File Photo

SARAH Ferguson has revealed that she had a “single mastectomy” after routine checkup led to a shock breast cancer diagnosis.

The Duchess of York, 63, urged Brits to get checked for cancer after sharing her personal ordeal.

Sarah Ferguson has had a mastectomy

Speaking on her podcast Tea Talks with the Duchess and Sarah, she said: “We’re actually taping the podcast today because tomorrow I’m going in for a mastectomy. It’s very important I speak about it.

“I don’t mind if no-one wants to hear form me. I am telling people. I want every single person listening to go get checked.”

A single mastectomy is an operation to remove one breast to stop cancer spreading from it.

The operation typically involves removing most of the breast tissue, skin and nipple – leaving a permanent scar.

She added: “I have to go through this operation and be well and strong.”

When asked how she felt about the operation, Ferguson said: “The doubting mind comes in.

“When it comes in say oh no, I’ve got this. I’ve studied the mental side of life in such depth. I have the toolbox to help me through it.”

The duchess was delivered the cancer news after a recent routine mammogram only a couple of weeks ago.

The Duchess, known as ‘Fergie’ was admitted to King Edward VII Hospital in Marylebone, London, on Tuesday.

It is believed she needed a major operation and was only discharged Sunday morning after six days of medical care.

But friends have described the operation as “successful”.

One revealed that Fergie has been told that the “prognosis is good” thanks to the “early detection”.

Fergie is believed to be resting at home with her family in Windsor.

The breast cancer was spotted early due to routine screening and she spent several days in a London hospital this week, they said.

A friend said: “It’s been a difficult time but she is very grateful to the medical staff who carried out the mammogram and detected it early and the medical staff who looked after her these last few days, she is incredibly thankful.”

She is said to be back home at Royal Lodge recuperating with her family, including Prince Andrew, 63, daughters Beatrice, 34, and Eugenie, 33, and three grandchildren.

Sarah, a grandmother-of-three, was notably missing this week from attending Royal Ascot due to her cancer operation.

Before going into hospital, the duchess spoke about her diagnosis on her new podcast ‘Tea Talks with the Duchess and Sarah’, which will be aired tomorrow.

The conversation was recorded before she underwent surgery and was due to be aired on Thursday but postponed until she was discharged, HOAR can reveal.

She had told close family and friends the diagnosis but wanted her cancer to be kept private until she was released from hospital.


A spokesman for the Duchess said: “Sarah, Duchess of York was recently diagnosed with an early form of breast cancer detected at a routine mammogram screening.

“She was advised she needed to undergo surgery which has taken place successfully.

“The Duchess is receiving the best medical care and her doctors have told her that the prognosis is good. She is now recuperating with her family.

“The Duchess wants to express her immense gratitude to all the medical staff who have supported her in recent days.

“She is also hugely thankful to the staff involved in the mammogram which identified her illness, which was otherwise symptom free, and believes her experience underlines the importance of regular screening.”

Ex-husband Prince Andrew has not been seen in public this week and attended only the private aspects of the Order of the Garter Day ceremony last Monday.

Her eldest daughter Princess Beatrice attended Royal Ascot on Tuesday and Friday with husband Edo Mapelli Mozzi.

It is thought they are rallying around the Duchess at Royal Lodge, in Windsor.

Andy and Fergie, who divorced in 1996 but lived together since 2008, have been threatened with eviction from their 31-room mansion on the Windsor estate.

Sarah is a patron for Teenage Cancer Trust and spoke at a Breast Cancer Foundation gala four years ago.

She said at the time: “When I started to work with the Teenage Cancer Trust over 30 years ago, it was because my stepfather had died of cancer and I wanted to do something for cancer patients.”

In 2021, Sarah visited a clinic in Poland to address the issue of women recovering after receiving a mastectomy.

Sarah’s father Ronald Ferguson was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1996, and also had skin cancer.

He died from a heart attack in March 2003 aged 71-years-old.

Fergie’s step-father Hector Barrantes, an Argentine polo player, died aged 51-years-old in 1990 after a long battle with cancer.

King Edward VII hospital is a private medical care for the rich and famous and favoured by the Royal Family.

Prince Philip was admitted to the hospital in January 2021and died three months later.

The late Queen Elizabeth II spent a night at King Edward VII in October 2021 for “preliminary investigations”.

In both cases, the public were not told of their diagnoses.

It is understood that Fergie wanted her cancer operation to be made public.

The Duchess of York launched her podcast with pal Sarah Jane Thomson on June 1 about the “highs and lows of everyday life”

She spent her first Christmas Day in more than 30 years with the Royal Family at Sandringham.

And, although she was not invited to attend the crowning of Charles and Camilla at Westminster Abbey last month, did get a VIP ticket to join the rest of the family at the Coronation Concert.

Every year around 11,500 women and 85 men die from breast cancer in the UK – that’s nearly 1,000 deaths each month.

Breast cancer is the fourth most common cause of cancer death in the UK.

Around 95 out of every 100 women survive their cancer for one year or more after diagnosis.

Ann O’Flynn, Head of Information and Support at Macmillan Cancer Support, said: “We’re saddened to hear of Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York’s, recent breast cancer diagnosis.

“We know that hearing the words ‘you’ve got cancer’ can turn people’s worlds upside down in a heartbeat.

“Macmillan is here to do whatever it takes to support everybody living with cancer, from the moment they’re diagnosed.

“Our Support Line and web chat service is open 7 days a week, 8am to 8pm, and our website and Online Community forums are available 24 hours a day.”