Angelina Jolie's Op-Ed in the New York Times about her double mastectomy has every woman wondering if they should get tested for the BRCA gene, and I'm not an exception.
I asked our in-house doctor, Dr. Juan, for the details of the procedure and if every woman should be tested for the gene (Watch Video Above).
I asked because my aunt had breast cancer and my mother and grandmother had breast cysts when they were very young, so I always wondered about my own risk factors. In 2005 there was a Grey's Anatomy episode about a woman who wanted to have a mastectomy for the same reason Jolie had one, but her husband was against it. This was the first I had heard of the procedure, and I was pretty amazed that it was even an option.
As I said, the woman in the episode had a husband who was not supportive because he believed his wife was mutilating her body by removing her entire breasts. He thought about the severity of the procedure. He thought about what it would do to their sex life. He may sound like a prick, but he was raising the same questions people are asking online today.
So, here's my question: if you were a woman who had an 87 percent risk of breast cancer would you wait to maybe (probably, if we're speaking about probability) be diagnosed with breast cancer, go through chemo and radiation, lose your hair and deal with side effects like insane nausea? Or, would you undergo a serious surgery that involves removing one of the most beautiful parts of the female body?
As scared as I am of surgeries (never had one) and fake boobs, I think I'd do the exact same thing Jolie did if I knew I could prevent something horrible from probably happening to me.