• Princess Kate has cancer
  • She gave some information about her treatment
  • What exactly does "preventive chemotherapy" mean?

Princess Kate (42) recently shocked the world with the news that she has cancer. In her video on social media, she revealed first details about her illness and treatment. After her abdominal surgery, she was diagnosed with cancer. 

"My medical team therefore advised me to undergo preventive chemotherapy and I am now in the initial phase of this treatment," Kate announced. The term "preventive chemotherapy" is not very familiar to people, which is why Kate's statement led to confusion among many fans. 

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Princess Kate's chemo treatment: This is exactly what happens

Chemotherapy itself is a form of treatment for cancer cells in which the mutated cells are combated with drugs. Other forms of treatment include the surgical removal of tumors or radiation.

Although Princess Kate has not given any precise details, it can be assumed that cells were removed from her during the operation which subsequently turned out to be malignant during a biopsy, i.e. an examination of the tissue.

This is where preventive chemotherapy comes into play. Doctor Eleonora Teplinsky explained to 'Health Digest': "Preventive chemotherapy in this case is being given after cancer surgery to reduce the risk of recurrence [...] Even though a cancer surgery may remove all the visible cancer, there may be microscopic disease that is not seen. Chemotherapy after surgery is given in some situations (depending on type and stage of the cancer) to get rid of that potential microscopic disease and reduce risk of recurrence."

This version of the treatment, also known as adjuvant chemotherapy in specialist jargon, does not confirm that Princess Kate is cancer-free after the operation or that she is still suffering from the disease. Rather, the aim is to protect Kate from new tumor formation or spread of the cancer.

Like other types of chemotherapy, preventive chemotherapy has its side effects. Hair loss and nausea can occur, the immune system is also weakened and patients can feel exhausted and weak. Princess Kate will certainly need some time before she is able to attend regular appointments again and fully resume her work for the royal family.

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