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Sunday 15th December 2019

BBC newsreader Jane Hill opens up about secret cancer battle and mastectomy

She has returned to work after her illness

BBC newsreader Jane Hill has opened up about her battle with breast cancer, and explained her decision to keep it secret from the world.

Jane, 50, fought the illness away from the public eye and had a mastectomy before returning to work earlier this year.

Jane Hill returned to work a few months ago after her secret cancer battle (Credit: BBC)

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Appearing on Lorraine on Wednesday (August 7), she also revealed her decision NOT to have reconstructive surgery to rebuild her breast.

In May, the reporter returned to work for the first time in six months, after having a mastectomy the previous December.

She now reveals she didn't think reconstruction surgery 'was right' for her, saying: "That's partly because of my body shape, as in reasonably slim but not flat-chested.

"A reconstruction is multiple operations. I thought I'm not having more operations than I need to.

"I didn't want to put myself through any more aneasthetic. I do have a massive great scar across my chest."

Jane Hill has decided not to have reconstructive surgery (Credit: ITV)

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Although she informed her family, friends and colleagues that she was battling the disease, Jane chose not to make it public "in case there was a hiccup".

I didn't want to put myself through anymore anesthetic. I do have a massive great scar across my chest.

She told presenter Christine Lampard, covering for Lorraine's holiday: "I wasn't private about it to any friends or family.

"I said to my boss do tell the staff, I don't want staff speculating why I wasn't in the newsroom. So he told staff in an email once I'd left work at the end of November.

"You just never know how it's going to go. You hope for the best."

Jane Hill didn't want to go public with her cancer battle incase there was 'a hiccup' (Credit: ITV)

She went on to say that her surgeon had been "confident", adding: "She was amazing on the day she told me the diagnosis.

"I realise what she made me do is leave that consulting room knowing all the positives in my case and there were generally lots.

"I was lucky. It was a personal decision [to keep it private] but I didn't want to talk about it on social media in case there was a hiccup.

"You don't want to constantly have to think about logging on and giving people an update. I know some people do but it wasn't right for me."

Jane is one of the success stories (Credit: ITV)

Sending encouragement to anyone else in the same predicament, Jane said the operation was nowhere near as painful as she feared it would be, and revealed radiotherapy for breast cancer "is not invasive or painful or difficult".

She added: "I'm super lucky I didn't have chemotherapy. And the [hospital] staff are amazing."

Jane returned to work in May, and decided then was the right time to reveal what she'd been going through.

In a series of tweets, Jane thanked the NHS for her treatment as well as joking that during her time away the BBC had 'cancelled her pass' meaning she was denied access to the building on her return!

Jane tweeted: "Overwhelmed by so many lovely back-to-work messages. I just want to say that my return wouldn't have been possible without our NHS.

"Sending love and thanks to the numerous #NHSuk staff who spotted my breast cancer, treated it, and continue to look after me. Thank you all."

She also thanked her partner Sarah Shepherd for her support, and revealed Sarah's mum was also diagnosed with cancer in the same month but that "dark humour" got them through.

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