First course of chemotherapy fails for BBC presenter

Steve Hewlett
Image caption Steve Hewlett has presented the Media Show since 2008

BBC presenter Steve Hewlett has said his first course of chemotherapy has "failed".

It was discovered in March that the 58-year-old has cancer of the oesophagus, which connects the throat to the stomach.

He is having a second course of chemotherapy, plus radiotherapy, at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London.

Despite the chemotherapy failing, Mr Hewlett said he was "relatively positive".

The journalist revealed his illness on the PM programme on Radio 4 three weeks ago.

On Monday, he told the same programme that - after four cycles of chemotherapy - it had looked like "extraordinarily good news".

But after the seventh cycle, a scan revealed that the cancer remained aggressive, and was growing back.

Shedding tears

He said it was like "being given notice" - although, he added, he did not know "whether the universe was going to act on it".

Mr Hewlett - who has presented the Media Show on Radio 4 since 2008, and also writes for the Guardian - has three children, aged 24, 21, and 19.

Since his diagnosis, he admitted, he has moments where he "had to shed a few tears".

"It can be in the bath, it can be in the shower, it can be just looking in the mirror (or) sitting on the bus," he said.

He added that he was happy to talk about his illness because "not enough is said, often enough, about cancer".

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