Angelina Jolie reveals she had undergone double mastectomy
Hollywood star Angelina Jolie revealed to the world that she has undergone double mastectomy to avoid high risk of breast cancer. She said that she revealed the truth to encourage women to undergo the process those who have a high risk of breast cancer.
Jolie added that she had lost her mother to this deadly disease and she does want her children to go through this phase. Her medical procedure ended only last month and over these months she kept the issue a deep secret and continue to work. "But I am writing about it now because I hope that other women can benefit from my experience," she said.
Angelina Jolie opted for this medical choice as she had a high risk of breast and ovarian cancer. She wrote in an opinion piece entitled "My Medical Choice" in The New York Times as why she had undergone double mastectomy.
The 37-year-old American actress said that she had a gene, known as BRCA1 which increased the chance of breast cancer by 87 percent and ovarian cancer by 50 percent.
"Once I knew that this was my reality, I decided to be
proactive and to minimize the risk as much I could. I made a decision to have a
preventive double mastectomy," she wrote.
"I started with the breasts, as my risk of breast cancer is higher than my risk of ovarian cancer, and the surgery is more complex," Jolie wrote.
On April 27, Jolie completed the three months of medical procedures that the mastectomies involved.
Jolie said now her chances of developing breast cancer reduced to five per cent.
Jolie who adopted three children and has three biological children from her partner Brad Pitt said, "I can tell my children they don't need to fear they will lose me to breast cancer".
Jolie has undergone several-stage surgical process but the main one is an operation that took up to eight hours as the breast tissue has been completely removed from her body and in place temporary fillers are put."You wake up with drain tubes and expanders in your breasts. It does feel like a scene out of a science fiction film. But days after surgery you can be back to a normal life," Jolie wrote.
The final phase of the process involved reconstruction of the breasts with implants, she said, adding: "There have been many advances in this procedure in the last few years and the results can be beautiful."
Jolie said Pitt has been a huge source of support through the entire medical processes.
"Brad was at the Pink Lotus Breast Center, where I was treated, for every minute of the surgeries," she said, adding that "we managed to find moments to laugh together."
Jolie said she has only small scars after the trial, with nothing alarming for her children to see.
"On a personal note, I do not feel any less of a woman. I feel empowered that I made a strong choice that in no way diminishes my femininity."
She said she hopes women living under the threat of cancer will be able to get tested.
"Life comes with many challenges. The ones that should not scare us are the ones we can take on and take control of," Jolie wrote.
British foreign secretary William Hague, who has worked with Jolie in the past few to highlight the issue and problem of sexual violence in conflict, said she was a "brave lady" and worked really hard and never showed any sign of these hard and long medical procedures.
"She's a courageous lady, a very professional lady. She's done a lot of work with me in recent months and travelled with me through some difficult places in the Congo," Hague told Sky News television.
"She gave no sign that she was undergoing such treatment. She's a very brave lady not only to carry on with her work so well during such treatment, also to write about it now and talk about it. She's a brave lady and will be an inspiration to many."