For the sake of her health and her family, Angelie Jolie has elected for preventative surgery.
39-year-old actress, Angelina Jolie, admitted during an interview with the New York Times that she received scary news from her family physician informing her that recent test results showed early signs of cancer.
“There are a number of inflammatory markers that are elevated, and taken together they could be a sign of early cancer,” Angelina Jolie’s doctor told her. “CA-125 [a blood test] has a 50 to 75 percent chance of missing ovarian cancer at early stages.”
Angelina Jolie was advised to see a surgeon immediately and to have her ovaries examined.
“I went through what I imagine thousands of other women have felt,” she wrote. “I told myself to stay calm, to be strong, and that I had no reason to think I wouldn’t live to see my children grow up and to meet my grandchildren.”
Her celeb husband, Brad Pitt, who was in France, quickly joined her back at home once he heard the news. Later that same day, she went to see a surgeon. Five days after more tests and scans, Angelina Jolie received results of 1 scan and tumor test, reading negative.
“I was full of happiness, although the radioactive tracer meant I couldn’t hug my children,” she wrote. “There was still a chance of early stage cancer, but that was minor compared with a full-blown tumor. To my relief, I still had the option of removing my ovaries and Fallopian tubes and I chose to do it.”
Early last week, she underwent a procedure called laparoscopic bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy. Doctors found “a small benign tumor on one ovary, but no signs of cancer in any of the tissues,” she said.
Physicians encouraged Jolie to have preventative surgery about a decade before the earliest onset of cancer in her female relatives, she said in the Times. “My mother’s ovarian cancer was diagnosed when she was 49. I’m 39.”
Angelina Jolie is a carrier of the BRCA1 gene, which puts her at a high risk of breast and ovarian cancer, and is related to three women who have died from cancer.
Two years ago, Jolie also wrote in the Times’ “Diary of A Surgery” about her double mastectomy in order to reduce her risk of cancer. She planned to have her Fallopian tubes and ovaries removed as a follow-up procedure.
“I feel deeply for women for whom this moment comes very early in life, before they have had their children,” she said. “Their situation is far harder than mine. I inquired and found out that there are options for women to remove their Fallopian tubes but keep their ovaries, and so retain the ability to bear children and not go into menopause. I hope they can be aware of that.”
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