15/02/2015 04:00 GMT | Updated 15/02/2015 04:00 GMT

Carol McGiffin Reveals She's Been Battling Breast Cancer For A Year, Opens Up About Chemotherapy Sessions And Mastectomy

Carol McGiffin has revealed that she has been battling cancer for a year.


The former 'Loose Women' presenter has spoken for the first time about discovering a lump in her breast last February, and being diagnosed with a tumour two months later.

She tells The Mirror: "I knew from the moment I saw the doctor it was cancer. She seemed pretty shocked at the size of the lump.

“It was a bit like, ‘Oh, right then. I know what this is about.’”

carol mcgiffin

Carol McGiffin

Because her tumour was grade 3 and highly aggressive, she was advised to have a mastectomy, which was followed by six rounds of chemotherapy and 15 rounds of radiotherapy.

Carol credits her fiancé, Mark, for getting her through the experience, claiming he's supported her throughout.

She adds: "I told Mark not to come to the hospital. But when I came out he was waiting in the reception area for me.

"I thought he’d gone to work as ­promised. I looked at him and said, ‘Yep, it is breast cancer.’ We just went straight to the pub and got absolutely plastered. But there weren't any tears.

"The cancer has not fazed him at all. Mark is very matter of fact and said, ‘It is what it is and we will deal with this.’

"He has been unbelievable really. I've got a right good 'un there."

carol mcgiffin

Carol and Mark

The former 'Celebrity Big Brother' housemate has also spoken about telling her former co-presenter Lynda Bellingham - who revealed last year that she had terminal cancer, dying months later after recording one final appearance on 'Loose Women' - that she was also battling the disease.

Although Carol felt at first it would be "unfair" to tell Lynda, she claims: "The last time I saw her was one of the handful of times I’ve worn my wig. I met up with some of the old Loose Women beforehand and we’d agreed not to tell her.

"But as we were chatting, Denise [Welch] said, ‘I think you should tell her,’ so I did. Bellers said to me, ‘F****** hell! Not you an’ all.’ It broke the ice and she was laughing and joking with me.

“It felt really comfortable. She was a bit ­annoyed that I hadn’t told her before but that was Lynda all over – worrying about others."

Carol was the longest-running 'Loose Women' presenter ever, spending 13 years on the panel before quitting last summer to appear on 'CBB'.

Determined to put her cancer experience behind her, it was rumoured last December that she would be going on tour with former co-presenters Denise Welch and Lisa Maxwell.

Photo gallery Celebrity Survivors See Gallery