Currently, everyone is talking about US actor Angelina Jolie and her brave decision to undergo breast surgery. But she is not the only one.
US actress Angelina Jolie, 37, has had both breasts amputated and artificially rebuilt for fear of cancer. Now she wants to have her ovaries removed. And she speaks openly about it. Recently, the New York Times published an article explaining why she made the decision: her mother, who was very close to her, died of cancer at the age of 56. And: Because of a gene defect, Angelina Jolie would also have 87% chance of developing breast cancer. Now she has a 5 percent risk. Angelina Jolie writes in her article: "Life presents many challenges, those we can control should not frighten us."
Only: Can one really control one's own body, the disease of cancer? We all tend to confuse probabilities with certainties. Did not Angelina Jolie act hastily? "She could have opted for a path of close provision, " says Professor Claus Bartram, director of the Institute of Human Genetics in Heidelberg. "Then she would have to go to the gynecologist once a year and get a mammogram."
But Angelina Jolie is heavily burdened by the death of her mother. She has seen her suffer, she has always been at her side. "And at 87 percent risk, of course, their risk is already very high, " said Bartram. How terrible to know and live with it. In this respect, we in the editorial board came to the conclusion that Angelina Jolie acted very courageously, also by daring to speak openly about her OP - and thus to bring the sensitive issue into the public consciousness.
This speaks for a mastectomy : "Although it is a serious procedure, amputation is the most effective preventive measure, " says Claus Bartram. "It can go along with women getting their ovaries removed, the same cancer gene as breast cancer, and doctors can rebuild their breasts."
This speaks against a mastectomy : "Many women associate parts of their self-esteem with their breasts, and having them amputated can hit them hard - even if there is little difference after a reconstruction, " says Claus Bartram. Anyone who is still in the family planning, will decide against the removal of the ovaries, rather make foresight.