Angelina Jolie is coming forward with the announcement she has had a double mastectomy.
After watching her mom die as a result of breast cancer at the age of 56, the actress made the decision to take preventative measures in not getting the disease. In an article for the New York Times she writes about her experience and why opting to have the procedure done back in February.
Jolie writes (upon discovering she had the BRCA1 gene), “My doctors estimated that I had an 87 percent risk of breast cancer and a 50 percent risk of ovarian cancer…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.”
The BRCA1 gene, increases a woman’s risk for developing breast and ovarian cancer by 65%.
Jolie also notes that after trying to explain to her children about the disease that took her mother’s life and the realization that her fate would likely be the same she made a decision.
On sharing her procedure Jolie says, “I am writing about it now because I hope that other women can benefit from my experience….I wanted to write this to tell other women that the decision to have a mastectomy was not easy. But it is one I am very happy that I made. My chances of developing breast cancer have dropped from 87 percent to under 5 percent. I can tell my children that they don’t need to fear they will lose me to breast cancer.”
On her partner and father of her children she writes, “I am fortunate to have a partner, Brad Pitt, who is so loving and supportive….Brad was at the Pink Lotus Breast Center, where I was treated, for every minute of the surgeries. We managed to find moments to laugh together. We knew this was the right thing to do for our family and that it would bring us closer. And it has.”
You can read the actress’ fully letter when you head over to The The New York Times .
(Photo: Getty Images)