Dame Esther Rantzen diagnosed with lung cancer which 'has spread'
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Dame Esther Rantzen has been diagnosed with lung cancer.
The 82-year-old broadcaster confirmed the news this weekend, explaining she is remaining 'optimistic' about the diagnosis.
In a statement, Dame Esther said: "In the last few weeks I have discovered that I am suffering from lung cancer which has now spread. At the moment I am undergoing various tests, to assess the best treatment.
"I have decided not to keep this secret any more because I find it difficult to skulk around various hospitals wearing an unconvincing disguise, and because I would rather you heard the facts from me.
"At the age of 82, this diagnosis has prompted me to look back over the years, and I want to express my profound thanks to everyone who has made my life so joyful, filled with fun, and with inspiration."
Dame Esther continued: "My friends have been amazing and have created memories which sustain me and give me strength.
"My colleagues with whom I have worked, and continue to work with in broadcasting, journalism, the voluntary sector, and in many other organisations have been a constant pleasure, and have amazed me with their tolerance of my wild ideas and awful jokes.
"I have been continuously inspired by the courageous children, older people and viewers who have trusted me with their life stories. I have always tried to live up to that trust.
"As I am sure you will understand, while I am awaiting the results of the tests, I am unable to answer questions. Thanks to the extraordinary skills of the medical profession there are wonderful new treatments, so I am remaining optimistic."
Dame Esther has become a household name throughout her career as a journalist and broadcaster. Esther is also the founder of Childline which she founded in 1986. She also set up another charity in 2013, The Silver Line, which supports elderly people in the UK.
Following the announcement, Sir Peter Wanless, CEO of The NSPCC, said: “I speak on behalf of Childline’s volunteers, staff and supporters in sending love and best wishes to Dame Esther Rantzen and her family.
"Esther’s tireless commitment to Childline and the wider NSPCC over the years is truly inspiring and the positive impact that’s she had on children’s live is unimaginable. No matter what, she has always been here for children and young people and likewise, we are here to support her during this challenging time."