Fiona Phillips reveals she's been diagnosed with Alzheimer's aged just 62

5 July 2023, 08:12 | Updated: 6 July 2023, 08:30

Fiona Phillips has opened up about her Alzheimer's diagnosis
Fiona Phillips has opened up about her Alzheimer's diagnosis. Picture: Getty Images

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Naomi Bartram

By Naomi Bartram

Fiona Phillips has said she's 'heartbroken' after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease last year.

TV presenter Fiona Phillips has opened up about being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease at the age of 62-years-old.

In a new interview with The Mirror, she revealed she had been given the news a year ago after suffering brain fog and anxiety.

She went on to say she is 'heartbroken' at having the same condition that has affected her mum, dad, grandparents and uncle in the past.

“This disease has ravaged my family and now it has come for me,” she said, continuing: “And all over the country there are people of all different ages whose lives are being affected by it - it’s heartbreaking.

Fiona Phillips at The Princes Trust Awards 2019
Fiona Phillips at The Princes Trust Awards 2019. Picture: Alamy

“I just hope I can help find a cure which might make things better for others in the future."

Fiona’s husband, This Morning editor Martin Frizell, 64, added: “Yes, tragically Fiona’s family has been riddled with it.”

The star is currently undergoing trials for a new drug which scientists hope could slow or reverse the illness in the future.

Fiona - who is mum to Nat, 24, and Mackenzie, 21 - hopes by telling her story she can help end the stigma which remains around the disease.

She said: “No one has known because I haven’t been blaring out loud, ‘oh yeah, I’ve got Alzheimer's'. And I have been so worried people will judge me or put labels on me. It’s a horrible secret to divulge.

Fiona Phillips and her husband Martin Frizell
Fiona Phillips and her husband Martin Frizell. Picture: Getty

"There is still an issue with this disease that the public thinks of old people, bending over a stick, talking to themselves.

“But I’m still here, getting out and about, meeting friends for coffee, going for dinner with Martin and walking every day.”

Martin has opened up about the moment the couple were told the news by doctors more than a year ago.

“I just felt sick”, he said, adding: “We both sat in silence. There was no funny line to make this go away. Nothing smart to say. Nothing.

“And then the doctor said he’d leave us in the room alone for a bit to digest it all. We just looked at each other and said: ‘S***. What are we going to do?”

Fiona’s friends have since shared messages of support for the presenter, with ITV’s Lorraine Kelly taking to Twitter.

Lorraine told her followers: "As expected our much loved Fiona is dealing with this shattering diagnosis with courage and optimism.

"She’s a good kind soul and I pray the treatment works and results in a massive breakthrough for everyone dealing with this hellish disease. Sending her and her family all my love."

One person then commented: "Amazing lady one of my all time favourite presenters.”

Another added: "Very very sad news. My Grandpa died in 2005 of Alzheimer's and my Gran in 2020.

“Thinking of Fiona her husband and family. It's heartbreaking. Fiona is an amazing lady and very much missed on ITV Breakfast xxxx."

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