Kate Middleton Suspends Royal Duties For Long Period To Recuperate From Abdominal Surgery

Feb 08, 2024 by apost team

Kate Middleton is one of the most popular members of the royal family. After she first rose to public attention as Prince William’s girlfriend when they were both students at St. Andrews, the Princess of Wales became an official member of the royal family when she and William wed on April 29, 2011, at Westminster Abbey.

Since then, she’s captured the hearts of the public with her duty to the British crown, her kind and attentive nature, and her fashionable sense of style. Kate is known for her poise, elegance and charm. It’s no wonder, then, that 66% of the British public has a positive opinion of the princess. She’s also a doting mother to her three children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis

Beyond being the future queen consort of the British monarchy, Kate is a key member of the royal family in her own right — at least, according to one expert. Vanity Fair’s royal editor Katie Nicholl described Kate as the “glue” of the family on a May 23, 2021, episode of “60 Minutes Australia.” 

Her role as the guiding light in the family was corroborated by Prince William’s former private secretary Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton, who told People, “She is a matriarch. Not in the sense of an older woman in a twin set and pearls, but she guides the family and advises (William) when he wants it.”

However, early 2024 saw Kate experience serious health issues that led to surgery, a hospital stay and a long recuperation period. Read on to find out more about what the Princess of Wales suffered from and how the public reacted to her absence from her royal duties. 

Catherine, Princess of Wales (2022), (Max Mumby/Indigo via Getty Images)

On January 17, 2024, Kensington Palace revealed in a statement that the Princess of Wales, Kate Middleton, had undergone abdominal surgery that had been scheduled the day prior at the London Clinic. It said the surgery had been “successful” and that the Princess would remain at the hospital for a 10- to 14-day recovery period. However, Kate would likely not return to her usual royal duties until after Easter, the statement added.

The Palace did not elaborate on what specific health issue the Princess was suffering from but stressed it was not cancer-related. The public was quick to offer their well-wishes for a speedy recovery as the media jumped into high gear, with reports the Princess had slipped into a coma being resoundingly refuted as “total nonsense.” Scores of photographers were assigned to the London Clinic in an attempt to garner photos of the Princess upon her departure. They were, however, unsuccessful, as news would later surface that Kate had left the hospital without her exit being spotted. 

Twelve days later, on January 29, 2024, the Palace released another statement revealing that Kate had returned to her residence in Windsor Castle to continue recuperating from the surgery and that she was “making good progress.” 

Again, well-wishers left the Princess scores of encouraging messages, including one that read, “So sorry she had to spend so many days away from the kids and so happy she’s back home now. The whole world loves her so much and may she have a fast recovery.”

The public has not been the only ones rallying around Kate during this challenging time as her husband, Prince William, has also stepped back from his royal duties to be by his wife’s side. The Prince postponed all his public duties during Kate’s hospital stay and continued to do so in the early days of her recovery.


Catherine, Princess of Wales (2022), (Max Mumby/Indigo via Getty Images)

After leaving the hospital, Kate settled into her home at Adelaide Cottage in Home Park, Windsor. There, she can recuperate comfortably among family and lean on their loyal staff, including long-time nanny Maria Teresa Turrion Borrallo. Meanwhile, William has reportedly taken the lead in caring for their three children, switching to “100% family first, day job second” mode, according to a Sunday Times source. 

According to the NHS, those recovering from abdominal surgery likely have to wait two to three months to be able to move around comfortably. They must also avoid lifting heavy weights above two or three kilograms. Standing and sitting exercises are recommended to help rebuild the core area. However, it can still take up to two years for the abdominal area to bounce back to its original strength. 

While Kate’s return to her royal duties will no doubt depend on the advice of her doctors, some estimated her recovery would take longer than suggested, even up to nine months, according to one expert. Others instead lauded the Princess for taking the time she needed to rest and recuperate, with one royal household insider telling People:

“It is sensible to take the time. … That is a great example to the rest of us, as you’re often told to get back to work as soon as possible, which can be damaging. It is good for all of us to see her taking the time, recovering properly and then coming back. We can all learn from that.”   

Meanwhile, others found optimism in the fact that William has already made a partial return to his royal duties, attending a fundraiser alongside Hollywood superstar Tom Cruise for London’s Air Ambulance on February 7, 2024. There, he took the opportunity to thank the public for his wife's support and said, “It means a great deal to us all.”

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (2014), (Max Mumby/Indigo via Getty Images)

We’d love to hear your thoughts and well wishes for the Princess of Wales and her family during this challenging time. Feel free to let us know your messages and pass this along to your family and friends who may want to do the same.

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