Esther Rantzen reveals her lung cancer is Stage 4: ‘Nobody knows if the medicine is working’

Dame Esther Rantzen has given an update on her lung cancer, now revealing it is Stage 4.

The TV presenter first announced her cancer diagnosis in January, saying that she no longer wanted to keep her health status a “secret”.

“In the last few weeks, I have discovered that I am suffering from lung cancer which has now spread,” she wrote in a statement at the time.

“At the moment I am undergoing various tests, to assess the best treatment.”

Now, months after undergoing tests, Rantzen told the Daily Mirror that she’s on “new medications”, but “nobody knows if it’s working or not”.

“But I will have a scan fairly soon which will reveal one way or another,” she said.

Reflecting on her life, Rantzen said the “diagnosis of Stage 4 lung cancer made me realise how very lucky I’ve been”.

Esther Rantzen (AFP/Getty)
Esther Rantzen (AFP/Getty)

For 21 years, between 1973 to 1994, she hosted BBC’s That’s Life! During that time she founded Childline in 1986, a charity promoting child protection.

In 2012, she later founded her second charity Silver Line, designed to combat elderly loneliness.

“I’m not good at regrets,” Rantzen, 82, admitted. “What I treasure most are the fantastic friendships I have made thanks to That’s Life! during the last 50 years, the people I met, and the team who worked so hard, and laughed so hard, together for so long.”

In her earlier statement, she expressed gratitude for her three children, Miriam, Rebecca and Joshua for having been “the most wonderful support, company, and source of love and laughter”.

She shares her children with her late husband, fellow TV presenter Desmond Wilcox, whom she was married to from 1977 up until his death in 2000.

Rantzen is best known for presenting That’s Life, a satirical topical entertainment show.

In 2015, she was made a DBE for services to children and older people through her charity work.