Girls Aloud star Sarah Harding has said she has been diagnosed with breast cancer, which has spread to other parts of her body.
The singer, 38, added she is having weekly chemotherapy sessions and told fans: “I am fighting as hard as I possibly can.”
She shared a photo of herself in her hospital gown next to machines on Instagram.
She captioned it: “I hope you are all keeping safe and well during these uncertain times. I’ve not posted on here for so long, thank you to everyone who has reached out to check in on me, it really does mean a lot.
“I feel now is the right time to share what’s been going on.
“There’s no easy way to say this and actually it doesn’t even feel real writing this, but here goes.
“Earlier this year I was diagnosed with breast cancer and a couple of weeks ago I received the devastating news that the cancer has advanced to other parts of my body.
“I’m currently undergoing weekly chemotherapy sessions and I am fighting as hard as I possibly can.
“I understand this might be shocking to read on social media and that really isn’t my intention.
“But last week it was mentioned online that I had been seen in hospital, so I feel now is the time to let people know what’s going on and this is the best way I can think of to do so.”
She added: “My amazing mum, family and close friends are helping me through this, and I want to say a thank you to the wonderful NHS doctors and nurses who have been and continue to be heroes.
“I am doing my very best to keep positive and will keep you updated here with how I’m getting on. In the meantime I hope you’ll all understand and respect my request for privacy during this difficult time.
“Sending you all so much love….xx”
— Cheryl (@CherylOfficial) August 26, 2020
Harding rose to fame alongside Cheryl, Nadine Coyle, Nicola Roberts and Kimberley Walsh on ITV’s Popstars: The Rivals in 2002.
Her Girls Aloud bandmate Cheryl simply shared a broken heart emoji in response to the news.
Coyle wrote on Instagram: “I love you!!! You have always been able to achieve miracles when needed!! I am here for all the way & always will be!!”.
She ended her message with heart emojis, three crowns and stars.
Steps singer Ian H Watkins also commented on her Instagram post, writing: “Sending HUGE” followed by three red-hearted emojis.
He added: “Stay strong xx We’re all behind you xx”.
The band went on hiatus on 2009 before splitting in 2013.
Harding has been largely out of the public eye for the last few years, after winning Celebrity Big Brother in 2017, narrowly beating singer Amelia Lily, with Made In Chelsea’s Sam Thompson coming in third.
During her time in the reality TV house, she began an ill-fated romance with Bachelorette star Chad Johnson.
In 2016 Harding made her stage debut in Ghost – The Musical, a retelling of the hit 1990 film Ghost, which starred Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze.
It followed a turn on the Channel 4 reality show The Jump, on which she suffered a knee injury and was forced to pull out.