Angelina Jolie has gone public with her choice to undergo a preventative double mastectomy.
In Tuesday's New York Times Op-Ed section, Jolie revealed the difficult medical decision she made after discovering she carried the BRCA1 gene.
This leads to an increased risk in breast and ovarian cancer.
Jolie's mother, Marcheline Bertrand, passed away at 56 after battling cancer for over a decade.
As Jolie said in her article, We often speak of “Mommy’s mommy,” and I find myself trying to explain the illness that took her away from us. They have asked if the same could happen to me."
Jolie's doctors estimated her breast cancer risk at 87% and ovarian cancer risk at 50%.
The double mastectomy has now reduced her risk to 5%. She privately began the surgeries in early February and has just finished in late April.
She credits longtime partner Brad Pitt as always being by her side and helping find moments to laugh throughout the difficult process.
Jolie underwent her surgeries at the Pink Lotus Breast Center. Her choice to open up about the double mastectomy was to help shed a light on cancer prevention for other women around the world.
"On a personal note, I do not feel any less of a woman. I feel empowered that I made a strong choice that in no way diminishes my femininity."
That sounds like the Angelina we know and love!