A timeline of King Charles' health struggles, from his cancer diagnosis to his return to public duties

  • Buckingham Palace confirmed King Charles III was diagnosed with cancer in January.

  • The announcement came after the British monarch sought treatment for an enlarged prostate.

  • Charles has returned to public duties and discussed experiencing side effects from cancer treatment.

It looks like King Charles III is back in business.

The king returned to public duties in April, over two months after Buckingham Palace announced he was diagnosed with cancer following a procedure to treat an enlarged prostate.

At the time of the announcement, the palace said the king would be stepping back from public-facing duties to undergo a "schedule of regular treatments." When Charles was out of the spotlight — and his daughter-in-law Kate Middleton was also undergoing cancer treatment — other members of the royal inner circle, like Prince William, faced pressure to step up.

Here's a timeline of Charles' health struggles, from his diagnosis to his return to the public eye.

Buckingham Palace announced Charles was undergoing a "corrective procedure" on his prostate in January.

King Charles III with Queen Camilla after he received treatment for an enlarged prostate at The London Clinic on January 29, 2024.
King Charles III with Queen Camilla after he received treatment for an enlarged prostate at The London Clinic on January 29, 2024.Chris Jackson/Getty Images

On January 17, the palace shared in a statement with Business Insider that Charles would be heading to the hospital to receive treatment for an enlarged prostate.

At the time, the palace described Charles' condition as "benign" and said the procedure he was having was "common with thousands of men each year."

When asked to provide further details about the condition and the procedure, the palace said it would not "for privacy reasons" and that more information about his upcoming engagements would be confirmed "in due course."

The announcement came the same day Kensington Palace announced Kate was in recovery after a "planned abdominal surgery."

Weeks later, Buckingham Palace confirmed Charles had been diagnosed with cancer.

King Charles stands in front of an open door frame.
Buckingham Palace announced King Charles had been diagnosed with cancer on February 5, 2024.Samir Hussein/WireImage/Getty Images

On February 5, less than a month after the king's prostate procedure, the palace made yet another unprecedented announcement: Charles has cancer.

The palace didn't specify the form of cancer Charles was diagnosed with in the statement shared with BI. However, it said the monarch's medical team discovered the cancer while he was undergoing his prostate procedure.

It added that Charles had already begun a "schedule of regular treatments" and was under advice to step back from "public-facing duties," though he would also be continuing "State business and official paperwork as usual."

The statement concluded with the palace saying Charles was "grateful" for his medical team's "swift intervention" and was looking forward to returning to "full public duty as soon as possible."

"His Majesty has chosen to share his diagnosis to prevent speculation and in the hope it may assist public understanding for all those around the world who are affected by cancer," it added.

Charles kept working behind the scenes, praised the public for its well-wishes, and received support from his royal relatives — near and far.

King Charles III reading cards and messages sent by well-wishers following his cancer diagnosis in Buckingham Palace on February 21, 2024.
King Charles III reading cards and messages sent by well-wishers following his cancer diagnosis in Buckingham Palace on February 21, 2024.Jonathan Brady/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

In the months after Charles' diagnosis, the royal kept busy behind the scenes. Shortly after his condition was made public, a representative of Prince Harry told BI that he was scheduled to fly to the UK from California to see his father.

Weeks later, he was pictured meeting with British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and opening get-well-soon cards sent to the palace by members of the public.

In the interim, Charles also received treatment at the same clinic as Kate, whom he remained in the "closest contact with," a palace spokesperson told the BBC.

On March 28, Charles made his first public remarks post-diagnosis. Before Easter Sunday, in a pre-recorded audio clip shared at the Royal Maundy Service, he said it was "a great sadness" that he was unable to attend in person due to his condition and stressed the importance of extending "friendship" in times of need, Royal Central reported.

On Easter Sunday, Charles was spotted alongside Camilla attending a service at St George's Chapel in Windsor. The service was smaller to reduce Charles' contact with others while undergoing treatment.

On April 26, the palace said Charles would return to public-facing duties and is gearing up to host Japanese royals in June.

King Charles III attends the Easter Service at Windsor Castle on March 31, 2024.
King Charles III attends the Easter Service at Windsor Castle on March 31, 2024.Samir Hussein/WireImage

After a "period of treatment and recuperation" following his cancer diagnosis, the palace said on April 26 that Charles is gearing up to return to public-facing duties "shortly."

The statement added that one of the first of several public events he's set to appear at in the next few weeks is a visit to a cancer treatment center with Queen Camilla on April 30.

"In addition, The King and Queen will host Their Majesties The Emperor and Empress of Japan for a State Visit in June," the statement read.

As Charles approached the one-year mark following his coronation on May 6, 2023, the statement concluded by saying he and Camilla are "deeply grateful for the many kindnesses and good wishes they have received from around the world throughout the joys and challenges of the past year."

Charles opened up about experiencing side effects from cancer treatment while speaking to a British army veteran on Monday.

King Charles III wearing a grey suit and a striped blue tie standing near British army personnel.
King Charles III during a visit to the Army Aviation Centre at Middle Wallop, Hampshire.Ben Birchall/PA Images via Getty Images

On May 13, the king visited the Army Flying Museum in Hampshire, where LBC reported he spoke with a British military veteran who had undergone chemotherapy after being diagnosed with testicular cancer.

During the interaction, the individual, whom the UK news outlet identified as Aaron Mapplebeck, told Charles he lost his ability to taste as a result of the cancer treatment, a side effect that the king said he'd also experienced.

On the same day, Charles took part in a ceremony handing over his title as the Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Air Corps — a role he has held for over 30 years — to William.

The BBC reported it was "unusual" for both the king and William to be present for the occasion, but said that Charles told attendees that they were in good hands with his eldest son, who used to be a search and rescue helicopter pilot.

"I do hope you'll go from strength to strength in the future with the Prince of Wales as your new colonel-in-chief," Charles said. "The great thing is he's a very good pilot indeed. So that's encouraging."

Read the original article on Business Insider