You cannot avoid the Angelina Jolie story this morning, it is spread across every media outlet. A chance to have a gawp at her breasts – but it’s all in a good cause…
In case you missed it – you can’t have done, surely! – Angelina has opted to have both the breasts you lusted over in ‘Gia’ surgically removed. A ‘absolutely heroic’ action according to her husband, undertaken to avoid getting breast cancer. Angelina’s Mother died of Ovarian cancer, and she carries the same BRCA1 defective gene – so she opted to have her breasts removed.
“Once I knew that this was my reality, I decided to be proactive and to minimise the risk as much I could. I made a decision to have a preventive double mastectomy.
“I started with the breasts, as my risk of breast cancer is higher than my risk of ovarian cancer, and the surgery is more complex.
Presumably she will now go on to have her Ovaries removed as well? Why not a full hysterectomy to remove the risk of uterine cancer? Then a Colostomy to reduce the risk of bowel cancer, and maybe Brad will consider a Bi-Lateral Orchiectomy to help ensure he doesn’t get testicular cancer? We could end up with the first totally risk averse bionic couple in show business.
There might be some point in all this self mutilation if there was any guarantee that it worked, and an extra guarantee that you wouldn’t get run over by a double decker bus on your way to the clinic.
“I can tell my children that they don’t need to fear they will lose me to breast cancer.”
Which statement from Ms Jolie raises the question as to why her children were ‘fearing’ that they might lose her to breast cancer in the first place. What sort of bed-time story are these children being told?
They still might, sorry to disappoint you Ms Jolie.
Myra Biblowit, President of The Breast Cancer Research Foundation, has been out on the airwaves urging other women to do the same thing – she has apparently discovered a ‘surgery that has no risks’.
“They can ask themselves if they would rather face breast cancer or face recovering from a surgery that has no risks. If they decide to have the preventative surgery (at a time that is appropriate for them) they can remove this terror from hanging over their heads.”
Deaths occur in the UK in approximately one in every 200,000 anaesthetics administered. So unless you are planning to have your tits lopped off without the benefit of anaesthetic (and I wouldn’t recommend this!) no surgery is risk free.
Nor will you have ‘removed’ the terror of breast cancer from hanging over your head! It will still be there, just minimised. Any surgery will leave stray cells floating about in your body, should they be breast tissue cells, and be inclined to become cancerous, they still will, even if they have lodged themselves in your big toe for want of another resting place.
Just for the record, 40 years ago, Ms Raccoon had a hysterectomy, not by choice. It was the result of mistaken identity in the operating theatre, when I was 23 – unfortunately long before one could sue the NHS, otherwise Ms Raccoon would have been several hundred thousand pounds richer than she is – and having not had a uterus for the past 40 years, I still have cancer of the uterus and have had for the past two years. Yep, those few stray cells that everyone is overlooking this morning as the media marvel at Ms Jolie’s heroic actions and encourage other women to do the same, managed to lodge themselves on my one remaining ovary and do what they had always intended to do, were programmed to do – turn into cancer.
What is with this modern obsession about removing all risk? Nothing is more certain, as they say, than death, taxes and taxidermy by your government. To listen to the commentators this morning, one could imagine that it was possible to live forever, just by following their advice.
Don’t smoke, don’t drink, live on liquidised wheat grass, lop your tits off – for all your miserable life of self-denial, I have bad news for you. You will still die.
Try getting up in the morning and marvelling at what you do have, instead of fretting about the bad things that might happen in the future. Do things that make you happy. Take advantage of the positive in life. You will still die.
But you’ll have been happy in the meantime.
Go forth and enjoy yourself folks!