Skip to main contentSkip to footer

The Queen's health: all the times Her Majesty has been ill over the years

Her Royal Highness' sadly passed away at her home in Balmoral


queen© Photo: Getty Images
Melanie Macleod
Wellness Editor
Updated: September 8, 2022
Share this:

Queen Elizabeth II, Britain's longest-reigning monarch and head of state for 69 years, has died at the age of 96.

Her Majesty passed away peacefully at Balmoral Castle. Her loved ones, including Prince Charles and grandson Prince William, had travelled to Scotland to be by her side after doctors expressed fresh concern for her health on Thursday. 

WATCH: The Queen reveals she was left "tired and exhausted" after coronavirus

Prior to her sad passing, the Queen had been unwell for several months, with the latest update on the Queen's health coming on Wednesday after Her Royal Highness was forced to delay a virtual meeting of the Privy Council on Wednesday on medical grounds.

This was the latest in a series of engagements that the Queen had been unable to make due to ongoing health issues, though she did meet the new PM Liz Truss earlier this week. 

The Prime Minister travelled to Balmoral for the occasion, marking the first time the Queen has appointed a Prime Minister at her home in Scotland.

The Queen has been largely absent from public life since her Platinum Jubilee weekend, where she was forced to miss several events owing to discomfort, The Queen was also sadly unable to attend the traditional easter service in 2022.

The monarch has been experiencing mobility issues and it's understood that her public appearances are decided on a case-by-case basis since she was struck down by Covid in February 2022, which left Her Majesty "very tired and exhausted."

Prior to her Covid diagnosis, the monarch has been suffering from mobility issues since October 2021, reportedly getting about in a wheelchair due to stiffness that left her unable to move.

MORE: The Queen's Buckingham Palace home gets '£90k facelift' – new photos

READ: The Queen to hire extra help at royal residence – and it's a top-secret job

In October of last year, the Queen sprained her back, preventing her from attending Remembrance Sunday Service at the Cenotaph, which reportedly left her "disappointed" to miss the service.

Following the sprain, she was under doctors' orders to rest for nearly a month after spending a night in hospital on 20 October undergoing preliminary investigations and sadly hasn't been completely active since.

queen ill health© Photo: Getty Images

The Queen hasn't been on top form since October 2021

Before October 2021, the last time she was known to be unwell was with a cold in January of 2020, when she pulled out of a WI meeting in Sandringham that she'd been attending annually since 1943.

MORE: The Queen's impossibly grand bed is like nothing we've seen before

Her Majesty was also blighted with a cold in June 2018. In fact, 2018 was a fairly difficult year for the Head of State. In May 2018 she underwent eye surgery to remove a cataract.

The Queen Epsom Derby© Photo: Getty Images

The Queen wore sunglasses after her cataract operation

Her Majesty was treated as a day patient at the private King Edward VII hospital in London and a Buckingham Palace spokesman confirmed the procedure to the Press Association, saying: "I can confirm that the Queen successfully underwent a short planned procedure to treat a cataract last month."

MORE: Why the Queen didn't attend Prince Charles and Camilla's wedding

She had a brush with ill health in 2016 too, being struck with a cold which rendered both The Queen and Prince Philip unable to attend the year's Christmas Day service – the first time they'd missed it in 28 years.

queen sickness© Photo: Getty Images

The Queen has been unable to attend engagements several times due to ill health

A few days later, the monarch, who had not been seen in public for days, was still too sickly to attend the New Year's Day service. A palace spokesperson confirmed: "Her Majesty the Queen will not attend Sunday worship at Sandringham today. The Queen does not yet feel ready to attend church as she is still recuperating from a heavy cold."

MORE: 17 times the royals have sported injuries

2013 was another tricky year health-wise. In November 2013 the mother-of-four experienced "mild discomfort" with her ankle after a busy weekend of engagements at Buckingham Place.

In a mirror of 2022, 2013 saw Her Majesty miss the Commonwealth Day Observance service on March 11, with the palace saying she regrettably could no longer attend "as she continues to recover following her recent illness."

queen stick© Photo: Getty Images

The Queen has mobility issues now

It was that year that the Queen was admitted to hospital for the first time in 10 years after being diagnosed with gastroenteritis.

A spokesperson for the royal family said the then 86-year-old was taken by car to King Edward VII Hospital in London.

Before that, the Queen had been well since 2004, when she's been in hospital for a knee operation.

MORE: The Queen's 775-room home Buckingham Palace she won't return to

LOOK: The Queen's majestic home Windsor Castle holds heartfelt memories – inside

1994 saw the Queen break her left wrist when her horse tripped during a ride on the Sandringham estate in Norfolk, while in 1993 the monarch missed Commonwealth Day observance with flu.

Going back even further, in July 1982 she had a wisdom tooth extracted and in 1949 she caught measles from a baby Prince Charles.

We're wishing the Queen well, our thoughts are with her.

Make sure you never miss a ROYAL story! Sign up to our newsletter to get all of our celebrity and royal news delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up to HELLO Daily! for the best royal, celebrity and lifestyle coverage

By entering your details, you are agreeing to HELLO! Magazine User Data Protection Policy. You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information, please click here.

More Health & Fitness

See more