Nick Clegg speaks about son's blood cancer diagnosis

Nick Clegg and wife

Nick Clegg and wife

Nick Clegg and his wife Miriam Gonzalez Durantez have revealed their eldest son's secret battle with blood cancer.

Speaking on ITV's Lorraine show this morning (Wednesday, September 13), they told how their eldest son Antonio, now 15, was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma previous year after discovering a "small, painless" lump in his neck.

"'The day that he was told, and I think that probably us telling him is one of the toughest things that we have ever done, the following day he went to school, he stood up and he told everybody 'I have cancer".

Nick, who was the leader of the Liberal Democrats between 2007 and 2015, also opened up about how the condition impacted him as a dad.

Speaking about his reaction to the diagnosis, Mr Clegg said: 'Certainly if you are unfamiliar with it, as we were, and your initial reaction, I think, we found, was like any mum and dad, it's irrational, but you just have this nearly physical wish to try and take it off your kid and take it yourself.

"So you very quickly move from the shock into just trying to support your child as they're battling through this very heavy treatment". Speaking on ITV's Lorraine show, the couple said they took their son to the doctor after they discovered a small, painless lump on his neck.

'Interestingly the thing he was most concerned about was sort of falling behind his classmates. His anxiety was more about keeping up with his classmates, keeping up with the school - it was very impressive actually'. The couple were speaking ahead of tonight's launch of a major report by blood cancer research charity Bloodwise, entitled Childhood blood cancer; the quest for a kinder cure.

In a joint article written for the organisation, Nick and Miriam said: 'Like all parents who have a child diagnosed with cancer, our first reaction was an overwhelming, if irrational, wish to take the cancer away from him and take it on ourselves.

After several months of chemotherapy, the teenager has now beaten cancer.

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