Keith Duffy, one of the remaining members of Boyzone, has revealed he has been suffering from panic attacks since the death of his bandmate Stephen Gately.

Duffy said the attacks had been “terrifying” in the first weeks since the singer’s death but said he had become better at coping with them.

He told Closer magazine: “I have waves of emotion that can hit me at any time. In the first few weeks they were terrifying. I couldn’t breathe, I’d go light-headed and it was incredibly frightening. They still come, but I can handle them better now.”

Gately died suddenly aged 33 while on holiday with his civil partner Andrew Cowles in Majorca in October. It was later discovered he had an undiagnosed heart condition which led to a build-up of fluid on his lungs.

Duffy said: “I was distraught. I felt anger, disbelief, I cried a lot and had terrible nightmares. But I believe Stephen’s in a better place now, he’s looking over us and he’s happy.

“Stephen brought out our nurturing sides – we’d think nothing of hugging and kissing each other. And he got us into pampering! We were into our flash cars, but Stephen would just spend thousands on beauty products.

“He got us into expensive face creams – we were the gayest straight band in the world and we loved him for it.”