Angelina Jolie, who is 37, announced she underwent a preventive double mastectomy. She made the decision after learning she carries a mutation of the BRCA1 gene, which sharply increases her risk of developing breast cancer and ovarian cancer. Jolie's mother, actress and producer Marcheline Bertrand, died of ovarian cancer in 2007 at the age of 56.

She said her doctors estimated that she had an 87 percent risk of breast cancer and a 50 percent risk of ovarian cancer, although the risk is different in the case of each woman.  Angelina went on to tsay that once she knew that this was her reality; she decided to be proactive and to minimize the risk. That is the reasoning behind her preventive double mastectomy.


In the Times op-ed, titled "My Medical Choice," Jolie said she finished three months of medical procedures at the Pink Lotus Breast Center in California on April 27 that included the mastectomies and reconstruction.