BREAST CANCER is one of the most common types of cancer that affects 1 out of 8 women in their lifetime. Even though the survival rates and success stories of women beating breast cancer have dramatically improved, there is still so much to be done to fight this battle.
Early detection and diagnosis, as well as increasing awareness of breast cancer are vital defenses in the fight against the disease. Campaigns to raise public awareness are actively helping to imbed the issue in the forefront of people’s mind and aid in removing barriers and fear that hinders some individuals to face the problems and risks involved.
Helping in this battle are some of the famous celebrities who themselves have faced and fought the disease. Famous faces that have been touched by the disease like Angelina Jolie play an important part in raising awareness to the public eyes.
1. Christina Applegate
At the age of 36, Christina Applegate was diagnosed with breast cancer through an MRI scan. Her mother was a repeat breast cancer survivor and in 2008, Applegate also tested positive for carrying the BRCA-1 gene mutation in one of her breasts. To reduce the risk of the cancer from spreading out or recurring, Applegate elected to have a preventive mastectomy on both of her breasts.
Later on, Christina Applegate founded the “Right Action for Women”, a nonprofit organization that aims to provide financial assistance to women at high risk for breast cancer.
2. Cynthia Nixon
In 2006, the famed Sex & the City star, found through routine mammogram that a small tumor was growing in her right breast. Her treatment of choice involved a lumpectomy and she also underwent 6 weeks of radiation treatment to fight the cancer.
Initially, she was hesitant to publicly admit having fought breast cancer but soon realized that her experience could bring inspiration and awareness to other women at risk. At present, Cynthia Nixon is an official ambassador for Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the largest breast cancer organization in the world.
3. Giuliana Rancic
The E! News host was diagnosed with breast cancer following a routine mammography that happened during her third cycle of In vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment in October of 2011. Initially, she underwent lumpectomy and radiation procedure to treat the cancer, but in 2012 she had decided to undergo a double mastectomy surgery.
Since then she had a full recovery and in August 2012, a new blessing came to the life of Giuliana and her husband Bill Rancic with the birth of their son Edward Duke Rancic thru gestational surrogate.
4. Kylie Minogue
The Australian pop star was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2005 in the midst of her Showgirl world tour. Early on, a misdiagnosis nearly took Kylie’s chance to battle and defeat breast cancer. Thankfully, she followed her guts and opted for a second opinion and rounds of tests, the doctors were then able to find the lumps in her left breast.
For treatment, Kylie underwent chemotherapy and radiation procedures. It may have taken her some time to recover but determined not to let cancer hold her back, Minogue made the ultimate comeback and returned to the tour in 2006 after her doctors gave her their “go signal”.
5. Olivia Newton-John
In 1992, the Grease star Olivia Newton-John lost her father to cancer and on that same week, she was also diagnosed with breast cancer. The singer believes that maintaining a positive outlook eased her through her battle with cancer. She submitted herself to have partial mastectomy and breast reconstruction.
For more than two decades now, Olivia Newton-John has been free of cancer. In Melbourne, Australia, she is also patron of the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Center at the Austin Hospital.
6. Sheryl Crow
In October of 2006, singer Sheryl Crow once said that she is a walking advertisement for early detection. A routine mammogram apprehended suspicious calcifications in both of her breasts. Immediately, the rocker postponed her tour and subjected herself to surgery and 7 weeks of radiation treatment. She also supplemented her treatment with acupuncture and herbal teas. Crow revealed that she was able to skip chemotherapy thanks to early detection of her cancer.
In March 2007, Sheryl Crow petitioned the Congress to fund research connecting possible links between breast cancer and environmental factors.
7. Kathy Bates
Fighting cancer once is a tough enough ordeal but Kathy Bates was able to surpassed cancer not once but twice in her life. The well-known Titanic and Misery star, defeated ovarian cancer in 2003 and in 2012, Bates announced that she had also beaten breast cancer.
After having successfully undergone double mastectomy, Bates thankfully revealed that she would no longer necessitate radiation or chemotherapy.
8. Dame Maggie Smith
One of the country’s well-loved actresses, Dame Maggie Smith was diagnosed with breast cancer while filming her role as Professor McGonagall in the movie Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.
Not to be defeated by illness, the courageous actress underwent intensive chemotherapy and radiation while filming the movie. It was also revealed that despite her ordeal, she was still able to hold on to her sense of humor and has even commented on how easily she could don her wig then as Professor McGonagall since she was already hairless due to cancer treatment.
9. Judy Blume
Author, Judy Blume is a living testimony that breast cancer could affect just anybody. There is no history of breast cancer in the Blume’s family, she did not eat red meat nor does she smoke or drink. But still in 2012, the author received a diagnosis of ductal carcinoma following her routine ultrasound.
Blume underwent double mastectomy and breast reconstruction surgery. Through her blog, she shared her detailed experience in her battle against cancer and she also saluted her network of friends who aided her through her treatment.
10. Wanda Sykes
After getting a breast reduction in early 2011, comedienne Wanda Sykes was diagnosed with a non-invasive type of breast cancer. Even though there is a minimal risk involved, Sykes still elected to have a preventive double mastectomy. She said that she opted for an aggressive approach to treatment to ensure the best probabilities for a healthy lifestyle.