Angelina Jolie Announces Double Mastectomy
It’s reported that Angelina Jolie revealed today that she has undergone a preventative double mastectomy after it was determined she carried the BRCA1 gene, which doctors estimated would give her an 87% risk of breast cancer and a 50% risk of ovarian cancer. The procedure reportedly reduces her risk to five percent. According to the reports, Jolie had the operation to help her six children be reassured she will not die young from cancer. Jolie’s mother died at 56 from the disease. Jolie said, “Once I knew this was my reality, I decided to be proactive and to minimize the risk as much as I could. I made the decision to have a preventative double mastectomy.” Brad Pitt was by Jolie’s side through the three-month ordeal, which included treatment, that ended in late April. She added, “I choose not to keep my story private because there are many women who do not know that they might be living under the shadow of cancer. It is my hope that they, too, will be able to get gene tested.” The decision was hailed by breast cancer patients, charities and other celebrities. According to the World Health Organization, breast cancer kills 458,000 people each year. Estimates are that one in 300 to one in 500 women carry a BRCA 1 or BRCA 2 gene mutation like the one Jolie has.