King Charles III is decently healthy at the age of 75. However, Buckingham Palace announced on January 17 that the British monarch had to undergo a “corrective procedure” after seeking treatment for an enlarged prostate. The following week, on January 26, his wife, Queen Camilla, revealed that he “is fine” as she left the hospital. Buckingham Palace confirmed on January 29 that Charles was discharged from the hospital that day and is now beginning “a period of private recuperation.” The monarch broke his silence on the diagnosis in a letter shared on social media on February 11.
Although the monarch seemed to be doing well, Buckingham Palace revealed on February 5 that a “form of cancer” was discovered following his surgery, which reportedly “shocked” multiple insiders from Buckingham Palace, according to PEOPLE.
“I was really shocked when I heard it,” the source told the publication on February 6, before adding, “He has not looked himself. I put it down to grief — he’d had two deaths close together — but maybe he wasn’t well, without realizing so. It would take it out of him.”
King Charles’ health has been at the upmost importance for the Palace since he became king after the death of his mother Queen Elizabeth II, who lived to the age of 96. Here’s everything you need to know about King Charles III’s health.
King Charles III Was Treated for an Enlarged Prostate
Buckingham Palace released a statement on January 17 announcing that King Charles was going to be hospitalized for an upcoming surgery.
“In common with thousands of men each year, The King has sought treatment for an enlarged prostate,” the statement read. “His Majesty’s condition is benign and he will attend hospital next week for a corrective procedure. The King’s public engagements will be postponed for a short period of recuperation.”
News of King Charles’ surgery broke the same day that Kensington Palace announced that his daughter-in-law, Kate Middleton, was hospitalized for a “planned abdominal surgery.” The Palace confirmed that Kate’s surgery was successful and she was recovering.
What Is an Enlarged Prostate?
An enlarged prostate, called Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), can cause bladder, urinary tract or kidney problems, according to the Mayo Clinic. The condition becomes more common with age, especially in men over 50. Treatments include medicines, surgery and other procedures.
How Is King Charles III’s Health Today?
Charles and Camilla, 76, were seen leaving The London Clinic on January 29. The palace gave the latest update on Charles’ health that same day “The King was this afternoon discharged from hospital following planned medical treatment and has rescheduled forthcoming public engagements to allow for a period of private recuperation,” the palace said in a statement, according to ABC News.
The Royal Family’s Instagram account released a statement on January 29, as well. “Thank you to all those who have sent their good wishes during The King’s hospital stay,” the statement read. “His Majesty is delighted that his diagnosis is having a positive impact on public health awareness.”
NEW: King Charles has left hospital after his surgery.
He did not reply to questions about how he is feeling.
He will stay in London tonight as he continues his recuperation. pic.twitter.com/dIE2gU3tdX
— Chris Ship (@chrisshipitv) January 29, 2024
Shortly after his procedure, Camilla visited Aberdeen, Scotland, and in a video by ITV reporter Chris Ship, she said that he was doing well after the procedure. “He’s fine, thank you very much. Looking forward to getting back to work,” she said in the clip shared on X.
A palace insider also opened up about why the monarch decided to be candid about the health issues and disclose exactly what was going on. “It was sensible to be more open about it, as otherwise, people might have thought the worst,” the source told PEOPLE for a January 25, 2024 report.
On January 26, Queen Camilla was seen leaving the London Clinic where her husband was staying. As she walked out, she told reporters in a separate online video that Charles is “fine.” PEOPLE reported that the king was doing well following the procedure.
Queen Camilla leaves hospital where King Charles is being treated. She said “he’s fine, thank you” as she left The London Clinic. pic.twitter.com/8BYU8mbRKb
— Chris Ship (@chrisshipitv) January 26, 2024
Unfortunately, doctors discovered that Charles has a form of cancer, Buckingham Palace confirmed in a public statement on February 5.
“During The King’s recent hospital procedure for benign prostate enlargement, a separate issue of concern was noted. Subsequent diagnostic tests have identified a form of cancer,” the palace’s statement read. “His Majesty has today commenced a schedule of regular treatments, during which time he has been advised by doctors to postpone public-facing duties. Throughout this period, His Majesty will continue to undertake State business and official paperwork as usual.”
Charles spoke out about the support he’s received since his going public with his diagnosis in an Instagram post on February 11, 2024. “I would like to express my most heartfelt thanks for the many messages of support and good wishes I have received in recent days,” he said. “As all those who have been affected by cancer will know, such kind thoughts are the greatest comfort and encouragement.”
On February 21, 2024, Charles went to his first in-person meeting, which was with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak at Buckingham Palace, since he revealed his diagnosis. In the meeting, the royal admitted he has had “tears” when experiencing the support of the public. “I’ve had so many wonderful messages and cards. It’s reduced me to tears most of the time,” he said.
During the meeting, Rishi also told Charles it was “wonderful” to see him. The Prime Minister also previously told the public that Charles’ cancer has been “caught early,” during an interview on BBC Radio 5 Live.
King Charles III’s Past Health Issues
King Charles has dealt with minimal health issues in his lifetime. Back in 2003, when he was still Prince Charles, he hurt his hernia laying hedges in the gardens at one of his estates and underwent a “fairly routine operation,” according to the BBC. In 2008, he had a “minor and routine” procedure to remove a non-cancerous growth from his face, according to the Associated Press.
King Charles has also had COVID-19 twice. He first tested positive for the virus in March 2020 as the worldwide pandemic began. At the time, his spokesperson told PEOPLE that Charles was in “good spirits” and continued working at home amid “mild symptoms.” He tested positive for the virus a second time in February 2022. Clarence House said in a statement that he was “self-isolating” until he was free to resume his royal duties.