Our genes are etched in stone from the moment of conception, 50% from mom and 50% from dad – that’s our genetics. This is who we are for better or worse. Epigenetics (above or controlling genetics) influences whether a gene expresses or unexpressed itself, for the vast majority of our genes. If caught in time, an unwanted, turned-on gene can be turned-off, and good genes can be kept on by the same process. Yes this can happen. Proper or improper Diet, Exercise, Sleep and our Surroundings (what we allow in or not in our lives, as well as our state of being – happy, sad, jealous, regret…) controls our destiny far more than the cards (genetics) we are dealt.
Angelina could have done thermography at 3 month intervals to determine the onset or progression of any abnormality – within the entire body. A cancer can be growing 8-10 years before it’s ever visible on a mammogram. Thermography has a far better chance at picking that up much earlier. Zyto scanning, NET, CRA, AK testing… could have been done as well to add additional color to the black and white of traditional lab testing. If a change occurred during her routine thermography sessions, more advanced testing could be done. (Note:There is far more to this topic, but this is a good, brief, overview.)
I do respect her for the courage it took to make such a difficult decision. I do though, personally, feel she took the past of least resistance. I thought she would have been more of a fighter. Just my opinion.
If you are interested in learning about epigenetics and how it relates to your life, disease (cancer…), this is a must watch video – Angelina Jolie’s Mastectomy Legacy
WK: Amazing how much credence people give to Genetics when the real thing to get interested in is Epigenetics. I like to think of it like this. Our genes are the cards we are dealt in the Poker game of life. Epigenetics is how those cards are played. Far more important is how those cards are played. And so much can be done to influence how those cards are played.
ME: You and I have spent our careers telling our patients that – way before the term epigenetics was around. And, we have to give props to DD and BJ for some serious epigentic shit they said back in the day.
WK: So true Marcus! Learning to trust the body’s ability to heal itself is the first prophylactic step in the right direction and in and of itself therapeutic
CM: Not to be a dick or anything but would you appreciate it if someone said cutting your own penis off to save your life was easy? Really Marcus? I get what you are trying to say, but until you have cut your penis off, you really have no right to make such a judgement. Believe it or not losing your breasts as a female is like losing your penis. I love you Man, and I respect where you are coming from but damn… SMH.
ME: MC, please reread my post again – completely. I said, “I do respect her for the courage it took to make such a difficult decision.” If I had the genetic predisposition for penis or testicular cancer, I would do exactly what I said in my post. I know too much after 24 years in practice to go into agreement with the media’s and AMA’s definition of “treatment”. Cutting-off her breasts did not save her life, it just made her feel like it did. Just my opinion.
WK: Cutting off your breasts to prevent breast cancer is just like selling your car to prevent auto theft. If makes no sense.
CM: I don’t agree and Marcus, I did read your post in its entirety, but to use the words “she took the past of least resistance,” in my opinion is just ridiculous and a judgement that I personally feel was not only rude but impossible for you to even know as a male. I do have a right to MY opinion too, do I not? So I have said it. I didn’t attack your thoughts but your words of judgement. I feel I was very respectful of your position as a doctor though…
RB: I think we all just take a loss as she was/is such a beautiful woman inside and out, I would like to think she had the top of the line advisers in this extremely difficult decision.
AR: I am in the “high risk” category for it (both grandmothers lost breasts, but survived), after a recent scare, the doctor suggested genetic testing. So far, I have decided against it. My thought, I already know I’m at a higher risk and finding out that I have the gene would only make me obsess about it everyday. The thought never crossed my mind that if I tested positive I would have the option for a mastectomy. Right now, I prefer to be very vigilant and active in my prevention for it. On the other hand I understand Angelina’s decision, her situation is different than mine. I did not lose my own mother at a very young age to cancer.