'King Charles effect': Cancer charity sees surge in website visits after monarch's diagnosis

King Charles announced his cancer diagnosis earlier this week. Credit: PA

A cancer charity has seen a “King Charles effect”, with a surge in visits to its website following the monarch's diagnosis.

Macmillan Cancer Support said Charles’s openness about his cancer diagnosis meant its information and support pages saw 48,304 hits on Monday, when the news broke.

This represents a 42% increase on the same day last year and is the highest daily figure since at least March 2020.

Buckingham Palace said the King had been diagnosed with cancer after a “separate issue of concern was noted” during treatment for his benign prostate condition.

Charles has been patron of Macmillan for more than 20 years, having taken up the role in 1997.

The charity’s chief executive, Gemma Peters, said: “Our thoughts remain with His Majesty The King and his family during what must be a very difficult time.

“We hope that, by sharing his diagnosis so publicly and at such an early stage, the King will encourage others to come forward and speak to their GP if they are worried about any signs or symptoms.

“At Macmillan, we hear day in, day out about the huge impact a cancer diagnosis can have on all areas of a person’s life, their work, as well as their friends and family.

“Just as the King wants to continue to carry out his state duties, we understand that many people either want to or have to continue to work during their treatment.

King Charles and the Queen seen for the first time since his cancer diagnosis. Credit: PA

“Macmillan can support you with this and any other concerns you may have.

“We are here in person, online and via our free, confidential support line, where you can talk to specially trained nurses who can provide practical tips and advice, support with issues around money and work, as well as a listening ear to anyone who may need it.”

Last month, NHS England saw a massive surge in people looking for information on melanoma skin cancer after Sarah, Duchess of York, was diagnosed with the disease.

There was one visit every 13 seconds to the NHS website for information on melanoma in the two days following the announcement.

If you or someone you know are worried about cancer here are some sign, symptoms and charities that can help:

It's important to be aware of any new or worrying symptoms. Although it's unlikely to be cancer, it's important to speak to a GP so they can investigate. Finding cancer early means it's easier to treat. If your GP suspects cancer, they'll refer you to a specialist – usually within 2 weeks.

  • Coughing, chest pain and breathlessness, for more than three weeks

  • Changes in bowel habits, for more than three weeks

  • Bloating, for more than three weeks

  • Lumps and moles

  • Unexplained weight loss

  • Tummy or back pain without knowing the cause

  • Indigestion and heartburn if you're getting it regularly

  • Itchy or yellow skin

  • Feeling tired and unwell

The following links have more useful information about cancer:

Cancer Research UK: signs and symptoms of cancer

Macmillan Cancer Support: signs and symptoms of cancer

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE): referral for suspected cancer

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