Less than a year after penning a revealing op-ed in the New York Times about her decision to undergo a preventative double mastectomy, Angelina Jolie has revealed that she plans to have more cancer-prevention surgery.
Last May, Jolie wrote that she’d tested positive for the breast-cancer-related BRCA1 gene, meaning she had a horrifying 87 percent chance of developing the disease. “Once I knew that this was my reality, I decided to be proactive and to minimize the risk as much I could,” Jolie wrote. “I made a decision to have a preventive double mastectomy.” Doctors said the surgery reduced her risk of developing breast cancer to just 5 percent.
But carrying the BRCA1 gene also means that Jolie’s risk of developing ovarian cancer—the disease which took her mother’s life at the age of 56—is at 50 percent and the Oscar-winning actress has confirmed that she’s planning on undergoing more surgery to lower her cancer risk. “There’s still another surgery to have, which I haven’t [had] yet,” she told Entertainment Weekly, for this week’s cover story. “I’ll get advice from all these wonderful people who I’ve been talking to, to get through that next stage.”
In her Times op-ed, Jolie also wrote about her decision to make her health issues public, writing, “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, and that if they have a high risk they, too, will know that they have strong options.”