Rita Wilson Shares Her Breast Cancer Experience

by Lia Beck

In a brave and important move, Rita Wilson opened up about having breast cancer and undergoing a double mastectomy in an exclusive statement to People. In her statement, the actress shares an explanation of her experience, including that she underwent reconstructive surgery and the fact that she saw multiple doctors. And if there's anything she wants to make clear, it's the importance of getting a second opinion which could lead to early detection — something that is undeniably important for others to hear.

Wilson starts by saying that she is expected to make a full recovery after her surgery,

Last week, with my husband by my side, and with the love and support of family and friends, I underwent a bilateral mastectomy and reconstruction for breast cancer after a diagnosis of invasive lobular carcinoma. I am recovering and most importantly, expected to make a full recovery. Why? Because I caught this early, have excellent doctors and because I got a second opinion.

She goes on to talk about how one doctor found "PLCIS (pleomorphic carcinoma in situ)" through a biopsy, she was "relieved when the pathology showed no cancer." But then a friend, who had breast cancer, suggested she get a second opinion, and another pathologist diagnosed cancer. This was then confirmed by another doctor. As Wilson explains,

I share this to educate others that a second opinion is critical to your health. You have nothing to lose if both opinions match up for the good, and everything to gain if something that was missed is found, which does happen. Early diagnosis is key.

Wilson makes a point to thank her husband, Tom Hanks, and her friends, family, and doctors. She ends by saying, "I hope this will encourage others to get a second opinion and to trust their instincts if something doesn't 'feel' right."

Like fellow actress Angelina Jolie, who has shared her experience with cancer prevention publicly on two occasions, and Taylor Swift who recently let her fans know that her mom has cancer, it's not just about sharing a story that many can relate to; although that is definitely the case, too. Instead, all of these women want to make the point that survival is possible with early detection. It's a lesson that is beneficial to everyone and something that should be shared often, not just between high-profile celebrities and fans, but between everyone. The conversation is so important, so it's great that people like Rita Wilson are willing to make the brave step and share their stories with the world.

Images: Getty Images