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5 Live presenter reveals leukaemia diagnosis

Chris Latchem

BBC Radio 5 Live Breakfast sports presenter Chris Latchem has revealed he has been diagnosed with leukaemia in a video posted on Twitter on World Cancer Day.

Latchem, who has worked for the BBC since 2009 and presented on Breakfast since last July, urged other men to “go get yourself checked out”. 

Despite the diagnosis, Latchem said he was “feeling healthier than I have for about two years” and that the type of leukaemia he had was very treatable.

“Last year I had a few things going on and I am a man in my young thirties and I thought I’m not going to get checked out, because we don’t do it, do we fellas? We sweep everything under the carpet,” he said.

“So eventually I did go and get checked out. I was feeling really unwell, this was in October last year. The GP came round to my house the next day and said ‘look, there’s no way to sugarcoat this, I’m afraid you’ve got leukaemia and that hits you right between the eyes, bang, death sentence, I’ll be gone at Christmas.

“But I’m not and I’m still here and I’m actually feeling healthier than I have for about two years, because the drugs I’m on and the variation of leukaemia I’ve got is incredibly treatable. I’m actually really fortunate.

“My doctor says this is very similar to diabetes in a way, in that you’ve got it and with this medication can have a long and relatively healthy life.

“If there was one thing I could influence on world cancer day, it would be this message: if you’ve got something wrong that you think is just not right, go and get yourself checked.”

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