New Idea compiled the statements from these celebrities. Angelina Jolie previously encouraged everyone to get tested.
“Today, it is possible to find out through a blood test whether you are highly susceptible to breast and ovarian cancer,” she said.
Jolie had a preventative double mastectomy, and she also had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed after finding out that she was a BRCA1 gene carrier.
Dr. Mary Ling, a breast surgeon for the NSW Central Coast, said that around 1 in 10 breast cancer cases is due to a faulty gene. As such, it is important to get to know a person’s family history.
A referral or a visit to a family cancer clinic is necessary if there is at least one of the two red flags.
If two or first-degree relatives have been diagnosed with breast cancer or ovarian cancer, if there are additional relatives diagnosed with the disease, if breast cancer has been diagnosed before age 50, if there is more than one primary breast cancer in the same person, or if one has Jewish ancestry.
“The risk of breast cancer increases with age, so don’t ever assume you are past breast cancer. More than 80 percent of breast cancer is diagnosed in women over 50, with the average diagnosis age being 62.
Women over 75 are not routinely invited for screening mammograms, so it is important to be breast aware and report any changes to your doctor,” she said.
Minogue learned that she has cancer at the age of 36 after she was initially misdiagnosed. Minogue decided to trust her instincts, so she had another routine check-up that confirmed that she has breast cancer.
“Just because someone is in a white coat and using big medical instruments doesn’t necessarily mean they are right… If you have any doubt, go back again,” she said.
According to Dr. Ling, even though breast cancer is far less common in young women, they are likely to get diagnosed with more aggressive triple-negative breast cancers by large breast cancers, and generally, have a poorer outcome.
“Young women are also more likely to be dismissed by doctors as ‘too young to have breast cancer,’” Dr. Ling said.
Angelina Jolie and Minogue are doing well today.