A former Bachelorette is using her platform to encourage women everywhere to look after their health. On Thursday, Jan. 23, Bachelorette star Ali Fedotowsky-Manno revealed she has skin cancer in a post on Instagram, where she encouraged all of her followers to have their skin checked by a doctor as soon as possible. In addition to sharing her story, Ali also shared a series of photos showing off the cancerous mole, so that other people know what to look for when doing their own skin checks.
"A couple weeks ago I found out I have skin cancer. When my dermatologist used the c-word, I just about fainted in his office," the TV personality wrote on Instagram, adding that she was diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma, which is the most common kind of skin cancer — and which she described as "rarely fatal," especially when caught early. "Needless to say, i’m never exposing my stomach to sun without sunscreen again!" she continued.
Though she noted that basal cell carcinoma is "not a big deal" in the grand scheme of things, Ali emphasized the importance of having your skin checked by a dermatologist every year. "The VERY first thing I did when I got diagnosed was text my family on a group text urging them all to get their skin checked," Ali said, adding that she wanted to do the same for her "extended family" on social media. "I’m lucky it wasn’t melanoma," she continued. "And I’m lucky that I caught it early."
The former Bachelorette has actually shared her journey towards her basal cell carcinoma treatment with her Instagram followers since the beginning. "You guys might remember when I went to get my skin checked because I documented it," she explained in her Instagram Story, shortly after sharing the news of her diagnosis on her main page. On Jan. 2, Ali had posted a photo of a mole on her stomach, and told her follower that "this guy ... looks funny."
And she plans to keep her followers updated on the whole process, in order to encourage them to take control of their own health and have their skin checked at least once a year. "I’ll keep you guys posted. I have a minor surgery to have it removed on January 30th," Ali said in a comment. Moving forward, however, she explained, "I plan on making it a priority of mine to ... be rigorous about applying sunscreen and reminding all of you to do the same!"
While some people might hesitate to share their health issues online, Ali's openness about her skin cancer diagnosis is part of her mission to connect with other women and mothers, through her social media presence and her blog, Ali Manno.com. "I just really love that that is my job," she told Parade in February 2019 about her blog. "I love connecting with other moms. I love sharing information. I love getting information from other moms. It's a dream come true."
By sharing her story online, Ali is hoping that all of the people who she has made those connections with will be inspired to get their own skin checked, and learn more about skin cancer to ensure that they can protect themselves.