I made headlines recently with news of my mouth cancer and the treatment and surgery I received, as a result. On the day the news broke, as well as being front page on countless newspapers, I spoke on the phone to Anne Diamond, the guest presenter on Channel 5’s “The Wright Stuff”. The following day, I appeared on the programme to talk more about it.
Click Here to watch.
On July 10th 2018 I went into Guy’s Hospital in London to undergo the surgery. After a short recuperation I was back on our screens talking about my experience.
Click the images on the right to view.
It’s been a trying time but I have also been given so much support from friends and family it has lifted my spirits.
I knew at the end of last year that things were going in the wrong direction but it took a few months before I went back to get another check up… which of course confirmed my fears.. all was not well.
I think I’m going to focus on what’s important now.. really important and start ticking off the things on my bucket list.
You can go crazy trying to work out why.. diet, stress, genetics but at the end of the day it’s about today and the future.
I feel like I’ve aged 10 years but slowly I hope I can claw a few back.. I’m not going to rush anymore I’m not going to keep remembering disappointment or anything negative... I’m going to love everyday I’ve been granted.
I hope you keep an eye on your health it may save your life one day !
Never be scared to get a second opinion.
I hope to help with funding for Guys head and neck department from now on and anyway you can help me raise awareness about the increase in mouth cancers then I would be very grateful.
Wishing you all a beautiful blessed day xx
Bucks Fizz star Jay Aston says mouth cancer nightmare has left her fearing for her voice
The Eurovision winner, 57, opens up about her cancer battle ahead of surgery to remove a section of her tongue - an operation which could destroy her chances of performing again
Bucks Fizz singer Jay Aston has told of her determination to keep performing, despite having mouth cancer which could stop her singing and even talking.
The Eurovision winner, 57, opened up about her battle ahead of surgery to remove a section of her tongue.
Doctors have warned the operation could destroy her chances of performing again. And if more cancer is found, and more of her tongue needs to be removed, there is a risk she will be robbed of speech, too.
Jay has been doing gigs in Britain with original bandmates Cheryl, 64, and Mike Nolan, 63. THEIR TUN
Before a biopsy on her tongue she recorded vocals to mime over at gigs, determined to keep performing.
And incredibly, despite getting the cancer diagnosis just under two weeks ago, Jay stuck to her plan and mimed on stage as recently as Thursday after a meeting with her surgeon.
“I went home, got changed and went to the gig,” she says. “That’s showbusiness. The thing that’s stood me in good stead is that in the 1980s you mimed for TV. Cheryl has been singing with me where I do solo stuff to give it some welly.”
Discussing the possibility of no longer being able to perform, she adds: “Cheryl and Mike aren’t getting a replacement, they say they will carry on as two. I would want them to carry on without me.
The star left Bucks Fizz in 1985, four years after they won Eurovision with Making Your Mind Up, in part due to the emotional fallout of a shocking tour bus crash which came close to killing them all. It left Jay with debilitating back injuries.
There were years of acrimony around contractual disputes and she did not speak to Cheryl for 23 years.
She adds: “It has been emotional on stage, yes.
“A couple of fans said I looked upset when I did the last Making Your Mind Up. There were nearly tears, but the audience lift you. I just don’t want to lose that. I love performing, it’s my life.” Within weeks, Jay will have around a centimetre of tongue removed on one side, from back to front.
Doctors predict that, as long as no further surgery is needed, she should be able to sing again in around a year, although nothing is guaranteed.
The star, who has a piano in her bedroom and is always singing around the house, can’t help but laugh as she recalls the conversation with her surgeon about her crucial skirt-tearing routine.
“We talked about where to put the scar because I rip my skirt off, and they said they would try and make it higher so it doesn’t show so badly,” she says.
“But I can always hide my legs. If I can’t sing, I can’t make a living.”
Jay says: “I am determined to be back this summer. I’ll mime, I won’t be able to dance, and skirt-ripping will be interesting. But it’s getting me through.
“Bucks Fizz had a stupid song, we had a bit of Velcro that made all the difference. But, incredibly, there is this love for the band. The love could be the thing that carries me. I hope so, I do hope it’s a happy ending.”
Drinkers and smokers at higher risk
Mouth cancer is far less common in the UK than elsewhere in the world, accounting for around 2% of cancers diagnosed here.
It is diagnosed when a tumour develops on the surface of the tongue, in the lining of the cheeks, in the roof of the mouth or in the gums or lips.
Less commonly, they develop in the tonsils, saliva glands or the pharynx, which connects the mouth to the windpipe.
Symptoms can include mouth ulcers that don’t heal quickly, unexplained lumps, loose teeth, numbness or a change in speech.
White or red patches on the tongue or mouth lining, like Jay experienced, can also be a sign.
Heavy smokers and drinkers and people who have had the HPV virus are at high risk.
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By Emily Retter, SeNIOR features writer
22:16, 25 JUN 2018