Cancer prevention options and family history

March 02, 2015

Oscar-winning actress Angelina Jolie-Pitt revealed Tuesday that she has undergone more preventive surgery to remove her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed in hopes of reducing her risk of cancer. Writing in the New York Times, the filmmaker and philanthropist said that a recent blood test showed a possible early sign of cancer. The news came as a blow to the star, as she has already had a double mastectomy.

Alison Conlin, M.D., an oncologist at Providence Cancer Center in Northeast Portland, says Jolie-Pitt's decision to undergo surgery is not uncommon for patients with similar risk factors. Before any genetic testing or preventive surgery decision, Dr. Conlin recommends every patient starts the process by reviewing their family history.