Angelina Jolie’s preventative mastectomy drew attention, but didn’t make people more informed

In modern medicine, few major diseases lack for celebrity representation. But a new study may discredit the cherished notion of public health improvements brought with “raised awareness,” finding most Americans aware of film star Angelina Jolie’s preventive mastectomy but nevertheless ignorant of breast cancer risks in general.

In a survey this summer, three-quarters of more than 2,500 Americans said they’d learned of Jolie’s decision to undergo a mastectomy to treat breast cancer. However, only one in 10 respondents could accurately answer questions about Jolie’s heightened risk for breast cancer. The answer? Women with mutations of the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes face a risk of breast cancer five times as high as others, with an ovarian cancer risk between 10-30 times higher.

Read the full, original story: Angelina Jolie’s Preventive Mastectomy Increased Breast Cancer Awareness But Didn’t Educate Public About Determining Risk

 

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