Princess Eugenie is supporting the hospital that treated her as a young girl. The mom to be opened up about her “complex” childhood surgery, while helping launch a collection of porcelain buttercups, designed by artist Clare Twomey, to raise funds for the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital. In a statement, the 30-year-old Princess reflected on her surgery, calling it a “very daunting” experience. “As a former patient of the RNOH, and as Patron of the RNOH Charity, I am delighted to support The Buttercup Collection,” Eugenie said. “I know from my own experience that being a child in hospital and having complex surgery can be very daunting. For almost 100 years, buttercups have offered hope at the RNOH, and I am so pleased to see this tradition continue in such a beautiful way.”
The Queen’s granddaughter underwent surgery to correct scoliosis when she was 12 years old. During the eight-hour operation, surgeons inserted eight-inch titanium rods into each side of Eugenie’s spine and one-and-a-half inch screws at the top of her neck.
Prince Andrew’s youngest daughter was recently named royal patron of the Scoliosis Association UK. “HRH Princess Eugenie’s own personal story has been an inspiration to many of us and our families who are affected by scoliosis,” the organization said in a statement. Stephanie Clark, co-founder and chair of SAUK, added, “I am absolutely delighted and grateful that Princess Eugenie is to be our Royal Patron. Her bravery and experience makes this a very personal decision, and will continue to offer encouragement to the many people of all ages who are struggling to come to terms with their scoliosis.”
Eugenie proudly showed off her scoliosis scar on her wedding day in 2018. The royal specifically requested that her gown, which was designed by Peter Pilotto and Christopher De Vos, have a low back so that the scar would be visible.
“I had always wanted a low back, part of it was showing my scar. I believe scars tell a story about your past and your future and it’s a way of getting rid of a taboo,” Princess Eugenie said. “For me it’s a way of communicating with people who are going through either similar situations with scoliosis or having a scar of their own they are trying to deal with.”