A double mastectomy decreased Angelina Jolie’s chances of getting breast cancer from 87 percent to under 5 percent
- Seattle, WA
- Last updated: 9 months ago
Check out the full article from on.realself.com
Angelina Jolie, 37, bravely opened up in an article she wrote for the New York Times about getting a prophylactic mastectomy in February after finding out she had the BCRA1 gene. In the article she explains her decision derives from the importance of reassuring her children that they won’t lose their mother to cancer — like she did.
“We often speak of ‘Mommy’s mommy,’ and I find myself trying to explain the illness that took her away from us. They have asked if the same could happen to me. I have always told them not to worry, but the truth is I carry a ‘faulty’ gene, BRCA1, which sharply increases my risk of developing breast cancer and ovarian cancer,” she says.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 211,731 women in the United States were diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009, which are the most recent statistics. That same year, 40,676 women in the United States died from breast cancer. While there isn’t a cure, many women are turning to double mastectomies and breast reconstruction as a preventative measure.
In the past we’ve shared stories of women who have gone through the same thing as Angelina. Rachel Joy Horn has a column with us, Ask Rachel, where she answers questions about life after a mastectomy. The 22-year-old underwent the procedure about a year ago after finding out she was BCRA2 positive. Miss District of Columbia Allyn Rose has made it her mission to educate women about their options when it comes to breast cancer prevention. After losing her mom and grandma to the cancer, she plans on undergoing a mastectomy later this year, she told us.
Bold move, what would you do?