Entertainment

Amy Dowden rings chemotherapy bell after last round of treatment

Amy Dowden has undergone treatment for breast cancer (Doug Peters/PA)
Amy Dowden has undergone treatment for breast cancer (Doug Peters/PA) Amy Dowden has undergone treatment for breast cancer (Doug Peters/PA)

Amy Dowden has rung a chemotherapy bell signalling her last round of treatment for stage three breast cancer.

The Strictly Come Dancing professional said she had “cried all morning” as she revealed that her eighth round of chemotherapy would be her last.

Dowden, who was unable to have a celebrity partner on Strictly this year following her diagnosis and subsequent cancer treatment, teased that she was now “warming up” her dancing shoes.

Posting to her Instagram page, the 33-year-old said: “We are finally here.

“I’ve cried all morning! Right an afternoon of chemo and then I’m so lucky and grateful to be able to ring that bell!

“Will never take it for granted! Thank you to the incredible Sheldon Unit!”

Ending her message, Dowden said that the NHS was “amazing”.

A follow-up post showed Dowden standing with two other cancer patients as they got to ring the bell.

Alongside the photo, Dowden wrote: “Today all three of us ring that chemo bell! 32, 35 and 26 when all diagnosed with breast cancer so please this is a note from us three to check your chest!

“Cancer doesn’t discriminate! Our wish to you all is the remember to monthly check!”

Dowden then went on to post a video which showed the moment she got to ring the bell.

Alongside the video, she said: “I rang the bell and I’m so thankful I got too!

“My toughest journey yet! These past few months I look back and think how did my body get through this both physically and mentally.

“From the words I’m so sorry Amy, it’s cancer and what’s your fertility plans. To having a mastectomy, two weeks later hormone daily injections for egg retrieval, a little Crohns flare up and then on to chemo plus shutting down my ovaries on the same day which sadly lead to sepsis, blood clots, losing my eyebrows, lashes (I have a few hanging in there) and three toe nails.

“I hate looking in the mirror at the moment but I know this is a small price to pay and ‘this too shall pass’.”

She added: “It’s been tough. But hopefully has now given me chance of more life which I’m eternally grateful for and I will never take for granted again.

“I’ll never be the same Amy again but, what I do know is I’m so much stronger than I ever knew and I have made the most amazing friends along the way.”

The dancer said that she now awaits an MRI to determine if she needs more surgery.

“But for now I’m celebrating my chemo journey coming to an end,” she said.

“Thank you all for your love and support along the way. My dancing shoes are warming up and I can’t wait to get back in the training room!”

The Caerphilly-born dancer, who joined Strictly in 2017, announced her diagnosis in May and revealed to Hello magazine that she found a lump in her breast in April, the day before going to the Maldives on her honeymoon with fellow professional dancer Ben Jones.

In October, the Strictly star made a surprise appearance on the BBC One show, appearing from behind a golden fringe wall, sporting a shaved head and white glittery dress, to read the show’s terms and conditions.

Later, in an episode of the spin-off programme, It Takes Two, Dowden said the support of fellow dancers and staff on the show allowed her to feel “liberated” to not wear a wig on the show.

She also went without a wig when she appeared at the Pride Of Britain Awards and the Stand Up To Cancer live show at the Francis Crick Institute, taking place in celebration of a decade of the appeal for Cancer Research UK.

Since her diagnosis and subsequent mastectomy and chemotherapy, the dancer has raised awareness for breast cancer and posted regular treatment updates on her social media platforms.