EASTENDERS star Samantha Womack has spoken candidly about the “brutal” chemotherapy she received during her battle with cancer.
The actress, known to millions for playing Ronnie Mitchell in EastEnders, announced back in August that she had been diagnosed breast cancer.
Sam50, spoke about how difficult chemotherapy was to endure and said it took a mental toll on her.
“It’s pretty scary at first. It’s important to note that when it’s needed, it’s still an incredibly strong and potent drug and does an amazing job,” the TV star said metro.
“But if you’re hesitating between grades, like how aggressive the crab is, you can sometimes, like me, walk a very fine line as to whether it’s necessary or not.
“And it’s such a brutal treatment because it’s poison and you understand that when it runs in your veins and you feel it very strongly.”
She continued: “After my second lap I could feel this panic that something was very wrong.
“And maybe that was because my cancer hadn’t progressed to the point where I was counting on it at the time. It was prevention for me. So I stopped because I felt my body start doing strange things.
“And that’s really important. The information I had to make that decision was critical.”
She added: “I’m still a bit tired. Physically I’m really good, but my brain is a bit tired. Sometimes so much thinking hurts.”
Sam underwent her lumpectomy to remove the cancer last year – but shockingly revealed she couldn’t feel the lump.
The actress opened up about her health and recovery in an interview with This Morning.
Samantha showed up This Morning and gave a health update to Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield.
She said: “I’m really fine. I was diagnosed with breast cancer three or four months ago.”
The star explained that she didn’t have a knot and was just randomly tested.
“It was really amazing because I didn’t find a knot, I didn’t feel uncomfortable.
“There was a lot of disease going on around our friends and family and I just thought I’d get a random checkup and I had an ultrasound and it showed a little shadow – at that point it could be anything, a cyst…then I had more.” Tests and then this diagnosis.
“I was lucky, it was less than two centimeters. I had a lumpectomy, which removed just one piece of tissue and five lymph nodes.
“The crazy thing about cancer is when you have it you understand there are so many different paths, different diagnoses, it’s a horrible world. It’s scary at first, but if there was ever a time for it, now that there are so many new treatments that are changing the face of cancer, it’s amazing.”
Although her surgeon advised her not to return to work too soon, Samantha was soon back at nine show weeks.
She said: “I think it’s my Norse Viking genes that helped me get back in there soon after the surgery.”
Sam shares two children, Lili-Rose, 18, and Benjamin, 22, with her ex-husband, Emmerdale star Mark Womack.
Sam became close with her Corrie boyfriend Ollie Farnworth, 50, when she starred with him in the 2019 stage adaptation of thriller The Girl On The Train.