logo
g Text Version
Beauty & Self
Books & Music
Career
Computers
Education
Family
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
Money
News & Politics
Relationships
Religion & Spirituality
Sports
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies

dailyclick
Bored? Games!
Nutrition
Postcards
Take a Quiz
Rate My Photo

new
Heart Disease
Horror Literature
Dating
Hiking & Backpacking
SF/Fantasy Books
Healthy Foods
Crafts for Kids


dailyclick
All times in EST

Full Schedule
g
g Gynecology Site

BellaOnline's Gynecology Editor

g

Gynecologic Cancers and Celebrities


The recent death of Charlotte Brosnan (daughter of Pierce Brosnan) from ovarian cancer at age 41 and the announcement by Angelina Jolie (age 37) of her decision to have a bilateral mastectomy to prevent breast cancer has brought forward the issues of breast and ovarian cancer for public consideration. The specific issue of hereditary gynecologic cancer and the potential to prevent this devastation should be stressed. The discussion should focus on awareness and understanding the available options to prevent the untimely death of mothers, sisters, daughters and friends.

Angelina Jolie’s mother died of ovarian cancer at age 56 and recently her aunt died of breast cancer. Jolie reportedly carries the genetic mutation BRCA1. She elected to undergo preventative bilateral mastectomy when she learned of her personal lifetime risk of 87% of developing breast cancer and also a 50% risk of developing ovarian cancer. Charlotte Brosnan’s mother also died from ovarian cancer, she was 43 years of age.

After reflecting on the cancer battles these young women and their families have undergone, many questions come to mind. Could Charlotte’s death have been prevented given her known family history? Should Angelina Jolie have her ovaries removed to prevent ovarian cancer given that she is at increased risk of ovarian cancer and ovarian cancer is notoriously difficult to detect early? What can individual women learn from their stories that will hopefully help decrease the likelihood of becoming a victim of breast or ovarian cancer?

Subject experts will have varying opinions on the answers to these questions and of course, the decisions are up to the individual; based on their personal circumstance and risk tolerance. But here is what I would like women to know.

1. There maybe a hereditary genetic mutation in your family if you have 1st or 2nd degree relatives who
• Develop ovarian cancer before age 50
• Develop breast cancer before menopause (the earlier age, the greater the risk)
• And multiple family members with these types of cancers (including colon and endometrial)
2. Genetic testing for many of these mutations is available and could save your life.
3. If you are at high risk of developing breast or ovarian cancer, you have options.
• Birth Control pills decrease the risk of ovarian cancer
• Hormonal therapies are available and can decrease the risk of developing breast cancer
• Prophylactic surgeries such as mastectomy (removing the breast) and bilateral oophorectomy (removing the ovaries) can significantly reduce the risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer.
4. Screening Mammography is effective in detecting breast cancer early enough where the chance of survival is quite high.



As with all health concerns, it is incumbent on you to get as much information as possible. Knowledge is power and understanding your options can be the difference between life and death (yours and your daughters, sisters and mothers).

I hope this article has provided you with information that will help you make wise choices, so you may:

Live healthy, live well and live long!
Add Gynecologic+Cancers+and+Celebrities to Twitter Add Gynecologic+Cancers+and+Celebrities to Facebook Add Gynecologic+Cancers+and+Celebrities to MySpace Add Gynecologic+Cancers+and+Celebrities to Del.icio.us Digg Gynecologic+Cancers+and+Celebrities Add Gynecologic+Cancers+and+Celebrities to Yahoo My Web Add Gynecologic+Cancers+and+Celebrities to Google Bookmarks Add Gynecologic+Cancers+and+Celebrities to Stumbleupon Add Gynecologic+Cancers+and+Celebrities to Reddit




Understanding BRCA
Medications to Prevent Breast Cancer
Breast Cancer Prevention
RSS
Related Articles
Editor's Picks Articles
Top Ten Articles
Previous Features
Site Map


For FREE email updates, subscribe to the Gynecology Newsletter


Past Issues


print
Printer Friendly
bookmark
Bookmark
tell friend
Tell a Friend
forum
Forum
email
Email Editor


Content copyright © 2013 by Dr. Denise Howard. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Dr. Denise Howard. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Dr. Denise Howard for details.

g


g features
Weight Gain and Menopause

Treatment of Hot Flashes

Hot Flashes

Archives | Site Map

forum
Forum
email
Contact

Past Issues
memberscenter


vote
Poetry
Daily
Weekly
Monthly
Less than Monthly



BellaOnline on Facebook
g


| About BellaOnline | Privacy Policy | Advertising | Become an Editor |
Website copyright © 2013 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.


BellaOnline Editor