ENTERTAINMENT
11/06/2020 07:20 BST

BBC Newsreader George Alagiah Reveals Cancer Has Spread To His Lungs Weeks After Recovering From Coronavirus

The BBC newsreader was first diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2014.

BBC newsreader George Alagiah has revealed his bowel cancer has spread to his lungs.

The 64-year-old was first diagnosed with the illness in 2014 and later said it had spread to his liver and lymph nodes.

In an interview with The Times, he said doctors told him in April the cancer is now in his lungs.

PA/BBC
George Alagiah

“My doctors have never used the word ‘chronic’ or ‘cure’ about my cancer,” he said.

“They’ve never used the word ‘terminal’ either. I’ve always said to my oncologist, ‘Tell me when I need to sort my affairs out’, and he’s not told me that, but what he did tell me is that the cancer is now in a third organ. It is in my lungs.”

George, who tested positive for Covid-19 in March, said he had kept the latest development secret, only telling his editor.

He said: “I said to my doctor, ‘You’re going to have to do the worrying for me.’ I don’t want to fill my mind with worry. I just know that he’s a clever guy, doing everything he can.”

He added his chemotherapy has increased as a result of the cancer spreading.

Simone Padovani/Awakening via Getty Images

In March, the Sri Lanka-born presenter shared a message with fellow cancer patients after revealing he had tested positive for Covid-19.

During an interview on News At Six, George revealed that he’d been diagnosed with coronavirus, but insisted: “If I can live with cancer, I can certainly live with Covid-19.”

He said: “I don’t want to trivialise because I seem to have had a mild dose, but actually, the very fact that we [cancer patients] are living with cancer I think gives us an edge. 

“We’ve confronted those difficult, dark moments in our life. And in some ways, I think that we, those of us living with cancer, are stronger because we kind of know what it is like to go into something where the outcomes are uncertain.”