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July 23, 2014

Christina Applegate is cancer-free

by Allison Waldman, posted Aug 19th 2008 2:02PM
Samantha Who standingWhen it was revealed to the media recently that actress Christina Applegate had cancer, it was a shock. She is only 36 years old, but as anyone whose life has been touched by cancer, this disease touches the young and the old and everyone in between.

Today, the star of ABC's Samantha Who? was on Good Morning, America to explain what's happening with her, and Christina declared that she is now cancer-free. "Absolutely 100 percent clear and clean. It did not spread. They got everything out, so I'm definitely not going to die from breast cancer."

In an exclusive, candid interview, she revealed that three weeks ago she had a double mastectomy to remove all traces of breast cancer. She will have reconstructive surgery over the next eight months to replace her breasts.

I really admire Christina Applegate. I've liked her a lot on Samantha Who?, but to do what she did today makes me like her even more. She didn't have to face the media and talk about her cancer. It takes courage to share your story.

And having a positive diagnosis, to be able to say you're cancer-free, doesn't make it any easier to talk about the fear you face when you were told that you have cancer and must undergo a difficult surgery or chemotherapy or radiation.

I've been in that position. A year ago at this time, I was in the middle of treatment for cancer. Nine months of chemotherapy. Like Christina, I am currently clean; my cancer is in remission. I didn't have breast cancer and face that ordeal, but when she said she plans to "have the best boobs in the nursing home," I smiled. The determination to live till 90 is one I share with her.

She admitted that she's been through a lot in just a few weeks since learning about the cancer and deciding on the surgery. The decision to remove both breasts was based on her family history; her mother was also a breast cancer victim. Christina tested positive for a certain gene mutation that links breast and ovarian cancer. To ensure a better future, she chose surgery to eradicate all the cancer in her body. "I just wanted to ... be rid of it," she said.

The choice was a tough one and she has been going through a range of emotions ever since, including self-pity and anger. It's understandable that she would ask, "Why me?" It's what we all want to know when faced with cancer.

In addition to sharing her experience this morning, Christina said she will start a program to help women at high risk for breast cancer to meet the costs of an MRI, a diagnostic test which is not always covered by insurance. It's thanks to an MRI that her cancer was detected. She will also participate in the multi-network, one-hour TV special fundraiser Stand Up to Cancer on September 5.

And she will be back on Samantha Who?, which returns with new episodes on Monday, October 6. When the Emmys air on ABC, Sunday, September 21, Emmy-nominee Christina Applegate -- Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series -- will most assuredly receive a tremendous ovation when she appears at the Nokia Theater. Whether she snags the Emmy or not, she's already very much a winner.

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bostonbevy

Kudos to Christina to being so open about her breast cancer. There are many women like her who have had BC, it's not an easy thing to go through. I was diagnosed with stage 4 BC three years ago. I am still in chemo (51 treatments) and counting. You either give into cancer or you become stronger because of it. I have come across a lot of strong women in the last three years and I found out that I am one strong woman. Women please make sure you check yourself and men, you too can get breast cancer.

October 03 2008 at 10:59 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Europa

"'8-22-2008 @ 11:15AM
Anita said...
That's fine, but I wasn't referring to the double mastectomy: "Christina tested positive for a certain gene mutation that links breast and ovarian cancer. To ensure a better future, she chose surgery to eradicate all the cancer in her body'"

All the cancer in her body related to the *breast* cancer is what I believe she was implying. In all the reports/articles I've read it only says she had a double mastectomy. Did she also say she had a total hysterectomy as well? I would assume she would have mentioned that. She said she was now sure she wouldn't die of *breast* cancer, not both breast and ovarian cancer (or some other cancer for that matter). If she had had a total hysterectomy at the same time as the double mastectomy I don't think she would be up and around (and looking so good) after only three weeks. I could be wrong though.

August 22 2008 at 12:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Alek Klein

I agree that Christina is an amazing woman for taking this situation with such dignity and grace. I think she is so funny and that Samantha Who? is a hilarious show. If anyone else likes it I found this video that is great. It is a Starter Kit Video and fills you in. Check it out at:

http://abc.go.com/primetime/samanthawho/index?pn=index

Gotta love it!

August 21 2008 at 11:52 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Carissa

I think that she shared this private matter with the public is incredibly caring and honest. She gives hope to other young women who are going through the same thing, and perhaps gives them courage to make choices they would otherwise be frightened to make. Kudos, Christina.

August 19 2008 at 10:58 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Julie Engle

I have always admired Christina and can associate with what she is talking about with the wide range of emotions. People say they understand and sometimes you just want to say "no you don't". It is a hard journey regardless of what your stature is. I had a double mastectomy on May 19, 2008 and I am on round 3 of 4 of chemo. I am proud to say I am a survivor. I am proud of you Christina. Survivors need to stick together and I am here for you.

August 19 2008 at 8:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Franklin

I've always liked Christina Applegate as an actor, but the way she's faced this cancer with both courage and candidness has made me admire her as a human being. Over the last 10 years I've lost 7 relatives to cancer of various kinds and I'm in a high risk group myself, so I know too well how devastating this can be.

Kudos to Christina and to you, Allison, for enduring and surviving this terrible disease.

August 19 2008 at 4:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Europa

"So, to possibly jeopardize her career and even her ability to procreate, is impressive - "

Just to be clear, you can still conceive after a double mastectomy. I just don't want some people to misconstrue your statement and think otherwise. :-)

August 19 2008 at 3:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Europa's comment
Anita

That's fine, but I wasn't referring to the double masectomy: "Christina tested positive for a certain gene mutation that links breast and ovarian cancer. To ensure a better future, she chose surgery to eradicate all the cancer in her body"

August 22 2008 at 11:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Anita

I'm really impressed by her, particularly considering she's in an industry that necessitates a certain standard of beauty/appearance, in a show that frequently requires her to strip to her underwear and in an arena where child-bearing has recently become 'hot.' So, to possibly jeopardize her career and even her ability to procreate, is impressive -

August 19 2008 at 2:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
HD Guy

My girlfriend just went through breast cancer last year - it tough for any woman...but to do it in front of the world has to be a challenge. I wish her well.

It's too bad Americans demonize breasts - never understood why a naked breast or breast feeding is evil and will ruin children and society - yet at the same time a womans' "worth" is often calculated by breast size.

What a world.

August 19 2008 at 2:24 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
cdawg

She rocks. Samantha Who is extremely funny, and Christina is one of the greatest comedic actresses of our time... Anyone who has seen her in the Sweetest Thing can agree with me.

Glad she's ok.

August 19 2008 at 2:11 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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