Kate Middleton speaking in the cancer video

Princess of Wales cancer timeline after six months out of the spotlight amid claims she flew to the States for treatment

Kate revealed her diagnosis at the start of the year

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Kate Middleton, the Princess of Wales, has spent the majority of the year out of the spotlight.

In fact, until Trooping the Colour last weekend (June 15), the only time we’ve had a glimpse of her was during that Photoshop picture scandal and when she released her video sharing the news she had been diagnosed with cancer.

From disappearing from public-facing roles to claims she went to the States for treatment, here’s everything we know about the 42-year-old royal’s cancer recovery as she returns to the spotlight…

Kate Middleton smiling in white
Kate had surgery this year (Credit: SplashNews.com)

January 16, 2024 – Princess of Wales undergoes planned surgery

On January 16 of this year, it was announced that Kate had undergone planned abdominal surgery.

The Palace announced the news in a statement.

“Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales was admitted to The London Clinic yesterday for planned abdominal surgery,” the statement read.

“The surgery was successful and it is expected that she will remain in hospital for ten to fourteen days, before returning home to continue her recovery. Based on the current medical advice, she is unlikely to return to public duties until after Easter.”

Kate Middleton looking over her shoulder
Kate returned home at the end of January (Credit: SplashNews.com)

January 29 – Princess of Wales discharged from hospital

Almost two weeks later, Kate left the hospital.

“The Princess of Wales has returned home to Windsor to continue her recovery from surgery. She is making good progress,” Kensington Palace said at the time.

“The Prince and Princess wish to say a huge thank you to the entire team at The London Clinic, especially the dedicated nursing staff, for the care they have provided. The Wales family continues to be grateful for the well wishes they have received from around the world.”

Kate began recuperating at Adelaide Cottage in Windsor.

February – Princess of Wales begins chemotherapy

As we later learned, Kate began chemotherapy at some point in February.

Following her operation, cancer was found. The Princess of Wales began “a course of preventative chemotherapy”, according to a palace spokesperson.

In March, during her public address, Kate explained that she was in the “early stages” of her chemo treatment.

March 10 – Mother’s Day picture

To celebrate Mother’s Day, the world was treated to their first glimpse of Kate since Christmas Day.

The Princess of Wales was seen with her three children – George, Louis and Charlotte – in a picture released to celebrate Mother’s Day.

However, huge controversy followed as eagle-eyed royal fans and even picture agencies began to speculate the image was manipulated. Kate was forced to apologise.

On the Monday, Kate was pictured in a car with William leaving Windsor Castle. At this point, no one knew of her cancer diagnosis.

Kate wearing a striped top in her cancer announcement video
Kate revealed that she has cancer (Credit: BBC)

March 22 – Princess of Wales announces cancer diagnosis

In a video shared at 6pm, Kate announced that she had been diagnosed with cancer.

“The surgery was successful,” she said of her planned operation at the start of the year. “However, tests after the operation found cancer had been present,” she said in the video.

“My medical team therefore advised that I should undergo a course of preventive chemotherapy and I am now in the early stages of that treatment.

“This of course came as a huge shock, and William and I have been doing everything we can to process and manage this privately for the sake of our young family,” she then added.

After recording the video, Kate went for lunch with King Charles.

The palace said it wouldn’t be sharing what kind of cancer Kate has.

“The Princess has a right to medical privacy, as we all do,” a spokesperson said at the time.

April 10 – Kate thanks well wishers

Mid-April saw reports that the Princess of Wales had sent thank you cards in a gesture to those who had sent her get well messages.

As seen on Hello, some lucky Brits received a postcard adorned with the palace’s letterhead.

The short note on the card read: “Thank you for your kind well wishes to Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales. Your thoughtful gesture is very much appreciated.”

April 29 – Kate and William share unseen wedding photo

To mark 13 years of marriage, a never-before-seen picture of Kate and William on their wedding day was uploaded to the royals’ official Instagram account.

“13 years ago today!” the caption read.

May 10 – Kate ‘doing well,’ says William

Royal fans got an update on how Kate’s treatment was going in early May. During an engagement, the Prince of Wales told one fan that his wife was “doing well”.

The comments came as the Prince of Wales visited the St Mary’s Community Hospital on the Isles of Scilly.

He also revealed that their children – Prince GeorgePrincess Charlotte and Prince Louis – were “very jealous” of his trip to Cornwall. He said he might bring them to Cornwall later in the year.

May 20 – Kensington Palace reveal when Kate will return to work

The palace issued an update on the Princess of Wales’ Early Years work, saying she was “excited” about the developments being made by her business taskforce.

However, they revealed that she wasn’t returning to work just yet.

“She will return to work when she has had the green light from doctors,” an aide told the MailOnline at the time.

Kate Middleton wearing red blazer
Kate was rumoured to be in the US (Credit: SplashNews.com)

June 8 – Kate apologies for missing the Colonel’s Review

Kate would usually take the salute at the Colonel’s Review in her role as Colonel of the Irish Guards. It takes place the weekend before Trooping the Colour. However, due to her cancer treatment, she was unable to attend.

Instead, she sent her apologies in a letter.

“I wanted to write to you to let you know how proud I am of the entire regiment ahead of the Colonel’s Review and Trooping the Colour,” Kate wrote in the note.

“Being your colonel remains an honour. And I’m very sorry that I’m unable to make the salute at this year’s Colonel’s Review. Please pass on my apologies to the whole regiment. I do hope that I’m able to represent you all once again very soon.”

June 11 – Palace denies Kate is undergoing treatment in the US

Earlier this week, it was claimed that the Princess of Wales was undergoing treatment at the MD Anderson Cancer Centre in Houston, Texas.

The rumour was amplified thanks to a TikTok video, in which a user claimed that Kate had stayed at the St Regis Houston while having treatment.

However, Kensington Palace have since denied the rumours.

June 14: Kate shares update in new statement

At 6pm on June 14, Kate released a new picture of herself on social media. As well as that, she revealed she would be attending the 2024 Trooping the Colour. She also shared details of her treatment.

She shared: “I have been blown away by all the kind messages of support and encouragement over the last couple of months. It really has made the world of difference to William and me and has helped us both through some of the harder times.

“I am making good progress, but as anyone going through chemotherapy will know, there are good days and bad days. On those bad days you feel weak, tired and you have to give in to your body resting. But on the good days, when you feel stronger, you want to make the most of feeling well.

“My treatment is ongoing and will be for a few more months. On the days I feel well enough, it is a joy to engage with school life, spend personal time on the things that give me energy and positivity, as well as starting to do a little work from home.”

‘Not out of the woods yet’

“I’m looking forward to attending The King’s Birthday Parade this weekend with my family and hope to join a few public engagements over the summer, but equally knowing I am not out of the woods yet.

“I am learning how to be patient, especially with uncertainty. Taking each day as it comes, listening to my body, and allowing myself to take this much needed time to heal.

“Thank you so much for your continued understanding, and to all of you who have so bravely shared your stories with me. C.”

Princess of Wales and Princess Charlotte at Trooping the Colour
The Princess of Wales and daughter Charlotte at Trooping the Colour (Credit: Splash News)

June 15: Trooping the Colour

They say actions speak louder than words and the Princess of Wales looked happy and on her way back to health during the King’s Annual Birthday Parade.

She arrived at Buckingham Palace in a car with William and the children. Kate then transferred to a glass carriage for the trip up The Mall to Horse Guards Parade. Once there, she watched the pageantry from a window with her children.

After travelling back to Buckingham Palace, Kate appeared on the balcony, waving to delighted onlookers.

The following day (June 16), the royals celebrated Father’s Day by releasing a new picture of William and the kids, putting Kate back behind the lens.

Read more: Princess of Wales ‘very sorry’ as she addresses break from spotlight in letter to the Irish Guards

Kate: A Queen for the Future airs on Saturday June 22 on Channel 5 at 9.20pm.

Kate Middleton’s recovery from cancer ‘going well’

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Robert Emlyn Slater
Senior Writer

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