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Angelina Jolie – is this really prevention?

Posted May 16 2013 10:10pm

by mnfadmin on May 16, 2013


I don't ordinarily post on a Thursday but with all the hype around Angelina Jolie and her double mastectomy and reconstructive surgery I feel compelled to.  I'm not here to judge, although personally I don't believe the solution is chopping off your boobs.  And in case you've been living in bliss or under a rock (I sure hope the earlier), Angelina has publicly announced she had her breasts removed in light of the fact she carries the breast cancer gene.  Can I just say one thing right here.  The media are suggesting she has a 87% of developing the cancer – this discovered by genetic testing however, these tests are not read this way – she is in fact, 87% more likely to develop breast cancer in comparison to the rest of the population.  This doesn't mean she will actually develop cancer – but rather, she just has a higher chance in comparison to the rest of the world.

The media are suggesting she is extremely brave – a hero even, and that she's stepping up because she carries the faulty gene.  I totally understand that she wants to be around for her children for years to come – we all do.  To me, it seems a pretty drastic 'prophylactic' method considering there many other options that simply MUST be considered in reducing risk of breast cancer – regardless.  Perhaps Angelina's story being so public, is freaking women out all over the world.  In some instances, women are being advised that this is their ONLY option.  I even heard one woman's story who was having a double mastectomy.  She didn't actually carry the gene what so ever, but because her mother and aunt had passed from breast cancer, she had been advised removal because there are potentially breast cancer genes that we are yet to discover.  It provokes me to ponder – where do we draw the line?  If I knew I carried the gene for blindness say, would I remove my eyes?  Hell no.  And whilst some of you may argue that blindness isn't life threatening, there is a great chance that I can influence the way my body works to prevent cancer from developing in the first place meaning I can decreases my chances of any illness.

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