In 2008, the 36-year old actress and already established breast cancer advocate, Christina Applegate found herself being diagnosed with breast cancer with a very important decision to make. Her cancer was found during a routine breast MRI that's able to find cancer cells earlier than mammograms can.
Her mother, singer Nancy Priddy, fought breast cancer twice and carries the BRCA1 breast cancer gene. Christina chose a double mastectomy even though her cancer was found in only one breast because the statistics were against her. Luckily, chemotherapy and radiation were not necessary.
Returning to work and future reconstructive surgery are in her future. She says she looks forward to have "great boobs" when she's in the "old folks home." By then, I don't think she'll be alone in that physical attribute!
Now Christina is focused not only on breast cancer awareness, but also to encourage early detection and help women get the tests they need and finances to pay for them.
Not all health insurers cover breast MRI's which can be quite expensive, so Applegate created the "Right Action for Women" organization aka the Christina Applegate Foundation. Its goal is to help women who have a higher risk for breast cancer receive and pay for breast MRI's. One of her fundraising efforts is to auction off ribbon roses, made from the ribbons of Christina's get-well-soon bouquets while she was in the hospital.
Applegate appeared on The Tonight Show, stating "If I can just save one person. That’s why I am doing this.”
"I'm going to face challenges, but you can't get any darker than where I've been," she said on Good Morning America. "So, just knowing that in my soul gave me the strength to just say, 'I've got to...I have to get out there and...and make this positive."
On the Oprah Winfrey Show, Applegate shared, "This is my opportunity now to go out and fight as hard as I can for early detection...there is this need and this desire to make every single day count...I used to say … 'Don't sweat the small stuff, not even the big stuff.' At the end of the day, none of it matters but your own joy, your own spiritual journey that you go on. God, your loved ones, your friends, your animals - these are the things you've got to cherish and love and embrace."
For more information of BRCA genes, click on http://breastcancerisabitch.blogspot.com/2008/12/genetic-hereditary-breast-ovarian.html#links