Monday, November 05, 2012

Sharon Osbourne Had Double Mastectomy

In an interview with Hello Magazine, Sharon Osbourne said she learned that she carries a gene that increases the risk of developing breast cancer. As soon as she heard the news, Sharon said she had a double mastectomy because she didn't want that shadow hanging over her for the rest of her life and that without the surgery, the odds were not in her favor. She went on to say that no one should pity her, because it was not a woe is me kind of situation, but a decision she made "that got rid of the weight I was carrying around." Granted, Sharon did have colon cancer not that long ago, but is this something people will start doing right away when they find out they have that gene? What if you discover the gene when you are in your teens? Do you get the surgery right then? Do you wait and see? Does everyone who has the gene get breast cancer?

42 comments:

Sarah said...

I've heard of many women doing this, even a few girls. The teen girl that I read about had it done after her mom and sister developed breast cancer and went through extensive treatments.
Her doctor said she was almost certain to develop breast cancer, so she just did it. After everything her family went through she was happy enough to get off that easy.

seaward said...

Not sure about getting my boobs removed (my mom had breast cancer), but I'm definitely having my ovaries removed at 30. Ovarian cancer killed my gramma in a HORRIBLE way, and it's usually not discovered till it's too late.

SusanB said...

I've also heard of women doing this. Judging from the picture on the cover, I would assume she's had some sort of reconstructive surgery. I'm not a fan of hers but I do wish her well in this.

MISCH said...

I have a close friend who did the same thing her mom and aunts all had breast cancer, her mom was lucky but 2 aunts died...
they're just a ball of fat and muscle not worth loosing your life over.

firebugDVM said...

One of my friends was actually on the tv show "The Doctors" for this. Her mom and grandma both had breast cancer and my friend tested positive for the gene (her sister was negative). Her doctor told her she had an 85% chance of developing breast cancer (and possibly ovarian). So she underwent a double mastectomy and a few months later had an ovariohysterectomy at the age of 31.

Patty said...

I used to work with someone who did this in her 20's. Due to family history she had a very high chance of getting it. I think this was before the gene testing. Her attitude was keep them and most likely get cancer or get rid of them and not get it. Really is life or death for some.

L'auteur said...

Yes, Enty, they still do. My 26-year-old friend just discovered that she is positive for the BRCA2 gene last week (her father died of aggressive pancreatic cancer in May). Her older sister is negative. My friend decided that by 30 she will have a double mastectomy and reconstructive surgery. She knows she has to have her ovaries removed as well, but she wants kids. So she doesn't have a timeframe on that.

I'm so sad for her--but statistics show that after she has these surgeries, she's at lower risk for developing cancer than those without the gene.

FrenchGirl said...

the statistics are against her,it's sadly the most clever decision (especially after a first cancer)

Cathy said...

I think it was a very smart decision, especially since she's done having children (and therefore any function they served is over)... I would think it would be a much tougher decision for younger women.

Sarah said...

Go away, Pippa.

The guy in the bottom left, Harry Judd, is the boyband star Lindsay Lohan had a fling with while they shot Just My Luck.

Ashlea said...

Agreed Misch!

auntliddy said...

Alot of woman do this b/c if u dont hv breast tissue, u cant get breast cancer. I think its smart, and wld do same.

Christina said...

My thoughts are with anyone who has to deal with this or has to make this decision. However, it is a smart decision for some and reconstructive surgery is a possibility so it's a great option for those who are more predisposed.

Lizzeh said...

Just curious, how come you don't use full words? Leaving out vowels doesn't make you look too smart.

Dee Lurker said...

Ahahaha! I haven't read the story yet so no offense need be taken-I'm just cracking up at her stretched-plumped-and posed picture. Who else here first heard of "Hello" magazine from the AbFab episode when Patsy gets a skin peel that burns off her face? This pic is EXACTLY the kind of shit they were making fun of!!

O.k, snark-attack over... How very brave; healing thoughts to her and anyone who has ever gone through this or knows someone who has gone through this or has thought about what it would be like to go through this...

annabella said...

having to make a choice like this is very sad and it takes alot of courage.

Lola said...

I applaud celebrities who tell their stories about their struggles with illness (including mental). I really think it helps to demystify and destigmatize disease, treatment and healing.

Say what you will about someone like Gulliana Ransic (sp?) but I think by going public, she gives hope to young women who are struggling with their diagnosis.

Amber said...

Reading things like this makes me more aware; I'm feeling like I should probably ask my doctor about testing. I've put off having kids until I'm "ready", but it would be nice to know I still have a clean bill of health so that I'm able TO have them.

lakeuniongirl said...

My grandma died of breast cancer and my mom is dealing with her second bout right now. She tested negative for the gene, but if I were to test positive, I would definitely consider having them removed. I never realized what a horrible surgery it is to have a breast removed. Obviously I knew it was no picnic, but I guess I didn't know how much breast tissue is not even in the boob...under the arm and on the back. My poor mom looks like a shark took a huge bite out of her. My heart goes out to Sharon and anyone else dealing with this.

Maria said...

I'm sorry I'm with Sharon Osbourne on this one. I do not know my family medical history and if I tested positive for the gene I would schedule that surgery posthaste. Actually now I need to ask my doctor about that test. Thank you for posting this, I was aware in the back of my mind there was a test but now this puts it front and center for me.

Maria said...

I'm sorry I'm with Sharon Osbourne on this one. I do not know my family medical history and if I tested positive for the gene I would schedule that surgery posthaste. Actually now I need to ask my doctor about that test. Thank you for posting this, I was aware in the back of my mind there was a test but now this puts it front and center for me.

Jessica said...

I think if someone asked me about losing my breasts when I was younger (20's to mid 30's) I would have been horrified, but you know, now I think about it (at 43) I really wouldn't give 2 shits to have them removed. No back pain from them, no chest getting in the way of everything I do in life, and omg to *not* have to wear a bra? Yea, I could handle it. Maybe the decision was/is just easier as you get older, so Sharon said eff it.

Snapdragon said...

Lizzeh--probably on a mobile device, if I had to guess.

Cheryl said...

It is a valid medical decision in many cases. Usually plans are made for reconstruction, and there are many good options.

I'm glad that Sharon is talking about it. It will definitely help a few people. I just wish some of these glamorous older celebs would talk about how they got through menopause. Helen Mirren, Let's talk!

deree said...

My mom had breast cancer,she just finished chemo and starts rads in a few weeks. As she was triple neg they suspect she carries the gene. I'm waiting to see if she tests positive for BRCA1 or 2. If she does,then our insurance will cover the test for me. I am about 95% sure I will have a double masectomy if I do carry the gene. I am large chested and have very dense tissue/cystic breasts already. I'm afraid of being subjected to needless biopsies.

I will have all my female plumbing removed if necessary too. I'm done having babies. My aunt died from what they think began as cervical cancer at 42. She was so riddled by the time they found it she lived barely a month.

Seeing the hell they've gone thru is enough for me to try and to avoid it at all costs. There's still a 2% chance you can get cancer in the remaining flaps of breast tissue. Low enough odds I still feel it is my best bet should I be a carrier.

I have 4 sisters,2 nieces and 3 daughters. These genes are very scary.

Abby said...

My sister and I got the BRCA2 gene from our dad (we found out after he died of prostate cancer). She's had the surgeries, but I haven't yet (I'm 41). I'm thinking of doing the mastectomies soon, though because the worrying is killing me. To answer Enty's questions, they won't test people younger than 18 and generally recommend waiting until age 25. Not everyone who has the gene will get cancer, but when the risk of breast cancer by age 70 is somewhere between 50-80%, that starts feeling like a risk you don't want to take.

auntliddy said...

Lol, as if that was my goal! My typing stinks so i figure the less words i use, the less likely i am to err. So if some vowels hv to take a bullet for the team, so be it, lol. Thanks, u gv me a good laugh!

Chilie said...

Lizzeh, quit trolling. You're new here. On this board, we don't fling shit. Erh rather, it is the newbie trolls who have invaded the board of late who are behaving badly, and they (you included) are lacking in basic manners.

auntliddy's typing has *always* sucked. As you can see, she has a sense of humour about it too.

All about Eve said...

I'm thinking about getting tested, I have family who have had it so I do worry and if I'm positive for it then I would get a mastectomy, this is not a worry I could live with.

For those dealing with cancer, stay strong and sending positive energy your way.

Call me yndy... said...

Our society is so damned weird about breasts.
It becomes part of your psyche that what makes you a woman is the size of the milk sacs hanging on your chest that even if you used them for that purpose only? Would come in handy for a fraction of your life.
If my insurance covered it and I carried the gene? No brainer. I've watched too many amazing women die fro it and a few others lose years of their lives and all of their other health fighting it. It's a breast, not a frontal lobe. If I had to cut off a gangrenous limb to save my life? I would. Same thing.
Kudos to Sharon.

Sherry said...

FirebugDVM: Where you been? Haven't see you in a while.

Lizzeh..don't pick on Aunt Licky, we lurve her.

Cat said...

Guess what? EVERYONE has the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes. They code for proteins that normally repair damaged DNA (i.e. a cancer risk). It's MUTATIONS in the BRCA1 and/or BRCA2 genes that are passed along in families and that increase your risk for breast/ovarian cancer. If the genes are mutated and don't produce the repairing protein like they should, DNA damage can accumulate and lead to cancer. Sorry, as a scientist I can't stand to see people saying they have the gene or they don't have it. Everyone has it. It's the mutation that not everyone has.

auntliddy said...

Thanks, cat, now i learned something.

auntliddy said...

:)

auntliddy said...

Whats to talk?! You sweat buckets, go a little insane, and eventually come back down to earth. Then, no periods, no pms- u are no longer hostage to your hormones. In the down side, u hv to find new readons as to why u r bitchy, lol

auntliddy said...

Reasons

shelly said...

good for Sharon. She went through colon cancer, now has grandchildren and probably doesn't want to waste time battling cancer again. I'm sure she got top of the line implants, and now has one less worry.
This one is a fighter and loves her family. Good on her! Geesh- there only boobs.

Brenda L said...

I'd hate to lose my boobs as my sex life would suffer greatly. Nothing like a boob massage to get the juices flowing. However, I much prefer to live to see grandchildren, I think.

L'auteur said...

Thanks, Cat! You are right--it is the mutation of the gene...

VeeBee said...

My partner had this done a few years ago. Her mom, grandma and an aunt all had breast cancer and she was prone to getting breast infections. She's also a Type I diabetic so with her immune system it's likely she wouldn't fare well with cancer or with its treatments (chemo, radiation, etc.) With everything else she has to worry about she did not want the spectre of cancer as well. (It was definitely a "when" not "if" situation.)She was 35 at the time and opted for no reconstructive surgery whatsoever. Instead she has a huge B&W tattoo of a gnarled tree that starts low on her hip, goes up her side and has branches stretching out across her scars. Over her heart there are two green leaves budding (for me and our son.)

Katrina Martiani said...

Awwwwwm VeeBee - that's nice!

elspeth said...

Some of 'AuntLicky's best posts have involved dropped/misused letters. We look forward to ALL of them.

I've known several women who had the gene mutation. Usually they'd already seen too many women in their families die from aggressive forms of breast and/or ovarian cancer. They had already faced horrible things, and the decision for them to have surgery wasn't as difficult as it would be for someone who hasn't experienced what they had. Still, the surgery is so extensive that you don't undergo it lightly.

I'm just very happy when someone discovers this after they've had the chance to have children or not. I'm also very thankful that we have the chance to have these tests now.