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Olivia Munn reveals breast cancer diagnosis, says she underwent double mastectomy

Benefits of breast cancer risk assessment
How risk assessment led to early breast cancer discovery in actor Olivia Munn 04:59

Actor Olivia Munn was diagnosed with breast cancer last year, she announced on social media Wednesday. She said she's had four surgeries in the last 10 months, including a double mastectomy.

"I hope by sharing this it will help others find comfort, inspiration and support on their own journey," the 43-year-old actor said in the post accompanied by photos of her in a hospital bed and with her doctors.

Munn said she was diagnosed two months after a test for cancer genes she took in February 2023 had negative results and she had a normal mammogram around the same time.

"In the past ten months I have had four surgeries, so many days spent in bed I can't even count and have learned more about cancer, cancer treatment and hormones than I ever could have imagined," she said in a statement accompanying the photo. "Surprisingly, I've only cried twice."

Munn said the cancer wouldn't have been found until her next scheduled mammogram if her doctor didn't decide to conduct a risk assessment for breast cancer.

"The fact that she did saved my life," Munn said.

Olivia Munn says she underwent double mastectomy after being diagnosed with breast cancer 02:10

The assessment resulted in her doctor sending her to get "an MRI, which led to an ultrasound, which then led to a biopsy," she explained. The biopsy showed that she had what she described as "an aggressive, fast moving cancer" in both of her breasts. The double mastectomy was 30 days later.

"I went from feeling completely fine one day, to waking up in a hospital bed after a 10-hour surgery the next," Munn said. "I'm lucky. We caught it with enough time that I had options."

For most women, the average risk of getting breast cancer is about 10-12%, Dr. Elisa Port, chief of breast surgery at Mount Sinai Health System in New York City, who wasn't involved with Munn's care, said on "CBS Mornings" Thursday. For women with a genetic predisposition, their risk is about 60-80%, Port said.

In her post, Munn urged women to get assessed for their risk. On "CBS Mornings," Port said there are different ways of getting an assessment.

"Whether that's going online by yourself or going to a doctor who can run this algorithm for you, those things will all give you a better idea of what you should be doing to be proactive about your health," Port said.

Munn was seen on the red carpet at the Oscars on Sunday with her partner John Mulaney. Their son Malcolm was born in late 2021.

"I've tended to let people see me when I have energy, when I can get dressed and get out of the house, when I can take my baby boy to the park," Munn said. "I've kept the diagnosis and the worry and the recovery and the pain medicine and the paper gowns private. I needed to catch my breath and get through some of the hardest parts before sharing."

John Mulaney and Olivia Munn arrive at Vanity Fair's Oscars party after the Academy Awards, in Beverly Hills, California, March 10, 2024.
John Mulaney and Olivia Munn arrive at Vanity Fair's Oscars party after the Academy Awards, in Beverly Hills, California, on March 10, 2024. Reuters/Danny Moloshok

Munn thanked Mulaney for his support during her treatment.

"For being there before I went into each surgery and being there when I woke up, always placing framed photos of our little boy Malcolm so it would be the first thing I saw when I opened my eyes," she said.

Mulaney commented on Munn's post with a supportive message and a heart emoji.

"Thank you for fighting so hard to be here for us. Malc and I adore you," he said.

Former "CBS Evening News" anchor Katie Couric, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2022, also responded with a sympathetic note.

"Sending you love and gratitude for sharing this. And a huge virtual hug," Couric said.

This story has been updated with additional details about how Munn's cancer was diagnosed.

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