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Sarah Ferguson diagnosed with malignant melanoma following breast cancer battle

Sarah, Duchess of York revealed her diagnosis on Sunday

Sarah Ferguson sitting in a wood, wearing jeans and a cardigan
Diane Shipley
Senior Online Writer
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Sarah Ferguson has been diagnosed with malignant melanoma, it was revealed on Sunday. In a statement, a spokesman for Sarah, Duchess of York said: "Following her diagnosis with an early form of breast cancer this summer, Sarah, Duchess of York has now been diagnosed with malignant melanoma.

"Her dermatologist asked that several moles were removed and analysed at the same time as the Duchess was undergoing reconstructive surgery following her mastectomy, and one of these has been identified as cancerous. 

Sarah Ferguson has been diagnosed with malignant melanoma© Ricky Vigil M
Sarah Ferguson has been diagnosed with malignant melanoma

"She is undergoing further investigations to ensure that this has been caught in the early stages. Clearly, another diagnosis so soon after treatment for breast cancer has been distressing but the Duchess remains in good spirits. 

"The Duchess wants to thank the entire medical team which has supported her, particularly her dermatologist whose vigilance ensured the illness was detected when it was. She believes her experience underlines the importance of checking the size, shape, colour and texture and emergence of new moles that can be a sign of melanoma." 

The Duchess of York Sarah Ferguson wearing green T-shirt and blazer on This Morning © S Meddle/ITV/Shutterstock
Sarah revealed the news on Sunday

Sarah is being treated at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London by Dr Andrew Furness, consultant medical oncologist, and by Catherine Borysiewicz, consultant dermatologist at the King Edward VII Hospital in London and is now recuperating in Austria at the MAYRLIFE clinic. 

Her eldest daughter HRH Princess Beatrice is patron of the British Skin Foundation and has worked with skin cancer patients.

The duchess' skin cancer was reportedly spotted by dermatologists during her treatment for breast cancer last year, with several moles removed for testing and results arriving just after Christmas. 

Sarah Ferguson attends the Red Cross Charity Event on November 09, 2023 in Rome, Italy© Getty
The duchess was treated for breast cancer last year

Sarah will need to undergo further testing to ensure it hasn't spread but it was found early so more treatment may not be needed. Malignant melanoma is the most serious form of skin cancer. According to the NHS website, "Melanoma is a type of skin cancer that can spread to other areas of the body. The main cause of melanoma is ultraviolet light, which comes from the sun and is used in sunbeds." 

Your chance of developing melanoma increases as you age, while a family history of the disease, sun exposure and having pale skin are also risk factors. 

Sarah, Duchess of York attending the Christmas Day morning church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk. © Joe Giddens - PA Images
At the Christmas Day church service at Sandringham with the royals

In June 2023, Sarah revealed that she'd been successfully treated for breast cancer. A spokesman for the Duchess said at the time: "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. 

WATCH: Sarah Ferguson reveals how she nearly missed her mammogram

"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." 

Sarah is being supported by her daughters, Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice© Max Cisotti
Sarah will no doubt be supported by her daughters, Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice

It is understood that Sarah was treated at the private King Edward VII Hospital in London which has treated members of the royal family for decades. Sarah selflessly went on to launch a campaign to raise awareness and encourage other women to be screened for the disease.

Image: David Venni

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