As his mother Diana, Princess of Wales did in 1996, The Duke of Cambridge donned a set of scrubs and put on a surgical mask to witness two operations on cancer patients at the Royal Marsden hospital in Chelsea on Thursday.
For approximately 10 minutes, William viewed a breast reconstruction surgery on an 80 year old cancer patient and then watched a bladder tumour removal of a male cancer patient in his fifties.
In 1996, Diana watched a heart operation at Harefield Hospital in Middlesex.
Dr. Pardeep Kumar and Dr. Stuart James led the operating teams today. “It’s slightly surreal meeting you in this situation,” William commented to the doctor.
The doctors allowed the Prince to view the patient through a micro-vascular microscope as the doctor walked him through the procedure for the breast reconstruction surgery. This type of surgical procedure takes around six to eight hours, although William was not there the entire time.
“That’s amazing,” commented William as he looked into the microscope. “That’s incredible. Is this fairly major surgery?” “Think of it as long rather than major,” Dr. James commented to William.
“He really had an insight into the kind of work we do. For want of a better word, he did enjoy himself,” Dr. Kumar commented. “The Duke was fascinated by the procedure and the intricacies of the surgery and it was a privilege to talk him through the surgery and its benefits,” he concluded.
Having a royal visitor during the procedures was not a disruption according to Dr. James. “The priority is looking after the patient,” he commented. “This sort of operation is slow, meticulous and very careful.”
Upon his departure from hospital, reporters inquired as to how the surgeries went. “It was fine. I’m still standing!” William then jokingly touched his stomach as if to allude to the fact that he had not become ill.
A Royal Marsden spokesperson “confirmed that both operations had gone well and continued after the Duke’s departure.”