October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, 31 days dedicated to increasing awareness of the importance of early breast cancer detection and treatment.
While the chances of women developing breast cancer is 1 in 8, due to early detection and advanced treatment, there are more than 2.5 million breast cancer survivors in the United States. Many well-known celebrities have had personal struggles with breast cancer, and now speak out to help others suffering from the disease.
Click through our slideshow of amazing women who have battled breast cancer and survived:
- Sheryl Crow
Sheryl Crow was 44 years old when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2006 but it was detected early and treated with radiation and surgery. The singer is a staunch advocate of yearly mammograms.
- Giuliana Rancic
Rancic, 36, found out she had breast cancer this year through a mammogram ordered by her fertility specialist before she continued with her in vitro fertilization treatments. The E! host underwent a lumpectomy in both breasts.
- Andrea Mitchell
The chief foreign correspondent for NBC News and MSNBC anchor announced in September that she has early-stage breast cancer - discovered during a regular screening - but that her prognosis is "terrific." She is a vocal advocate of every woman getting early, regular screening to reduce their risk.
- Christina Applegate
The Emmy award-winning actress, now starring in "Up All Night," found out in 2008 that she had breast cancer at the age of 36. She also tested positive for the BRAC, or breast cancer gene, so she opted to have a double mastectomy and not risk the cancer coming back.
- Cynthia Nixon
The "Sex and the City" star was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2006 after a routine mammogram and immediately scheduled a lumpectomy so she wouldn't miss a performance of the Broadway play in which she was performing. She is now an ambassador for Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
- Wanda Sykes
This 47-year-old actress-comedian went public with her diagnosis of breast cancer this year; she had a mastectomy earlier this year. The cancer was found after she had a cosmetic procedure for breast-reduction surgery.
- Robin Roberts
The "Good Morning, America" anchor underwent surgery for breast cancer in 2007 at the age of 46 after finding a lump during a self-exam. She believes all the red meat she ate and the sodium-laden canned foods she consumed helped contribute to the disease.
- Suzanne Somers
This actress was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2000. In 2009, she wrote a book entitled Knockout, arguing against what she views as the much-used and, in her view, often pointless treatment of chemotherapy.
- Martina Navratilova
World tennis champion Martina Navratilova found out she had breast cancer in 2010 - a discovery she called "my 9/11." Currently serving as AARP's Health and Fitness Ambassador, Navratilova turned 55 this week and encourages people to stay fit and healthy, and get early screenings.
Click each photo for an enlarged view.
For related links on genConnect:
- Great News in Breast Cancer Research!
- Breast Cancer Survivor Dana Cowin on Staying Positive (VIDEO)
- Breast Cancer, Cervical Cancer on the Rise Around the Globe
- Another Reason to Exercise: Obesity Boosts Risk for Aggressive Breast Cancer
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