Former Emmerdale actress Malandra Burrows has talked about how her time in the I’m A Celebrity jungle gave her the strength to fight breast cancer. During an interview with Lorraine on Wednesday, May 11, she described the moment she told a nurse: “I’ve been in the jungle with Ant and Dec. I can do anything.”
The actress, who was diagnosed with breast cancer earlier this year, appeared on I’m A Celebrity in 2006 and during her time on the show she took part in many Bushtucker trials.
Talking to Lorraine from her home, Malandra, who appeared on the ITV soap as Kathy Glover from 1985-2005, said: “The things that Ant and Dec put me through… I didn’t know it would save me now.” During her time on the reality show, she famously had to be rescued by Matt Willis and Lauren Booth when she was found hanging from a tight rope. Ultimately, she finished the popular ITV show in sixth place.
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Speaking about her breast cancer, Lorraine praised Malandra’s “bravery” and “positivity” when battling the illness. Malandra talked about how her dog, Teddy, was the one who had alerted her to the lump . The 56-year-old said: “It was so bizarre. We were watching a movie together. Teddy wanted to lie on my chest, something she’d never done before. She was nestling and head-butting me. This one night, she swiped hard with her head and I thought that she must have bruised me. I thought it was a swollen gland.”
Unfortunately for Malandra, a chat with a GP proved otherwise and she was later diagnosed with breast cancer. Lorraine called Teddy’s discovery, “astonishing”.
During her interview, Malandra paid tribute to Deborah James, who recently revealed that she is receiving end of life care for bowel cancer. “My other great inspiration has to be the wonderful Deborah James. Thank you for the inspiration that you’ve given me,” She implored that, “every lady out there, check yourself and if you feel something different, get it checked.”
The actress has had three major operations to treat her breast cancer and told Lorraine that her treatment “changes all the time” but hopes that she can “make a difference and be a life saver”.