Angelina Jolie's doctor reveals details of her mastectomy surgery
Angelina Jolie's doctor, Kristi Funk, is opening up about the actress' brave medical journey.
Jolie, 37, recently came forward and revealed that she underwent three months of medical procedures in order to reduce her risk of developing breast cancer. Now, the actress' doctor is opening up about her surgical journey, explaining how her bravery and positivity are aiding in her recovery.
"To a large extent, I believe recovery reflects expectation," Dr. Funk of the Pink Lotus Breast Center wrote in her blog post. The article, which she posted shortly following the actress' announcement, offered step-by-step details of Jolie's BRCA1 diagnosis, surgeries and recuperation.
The doctor shares that the actress underwent her initial surgery on February 2, with fiance Brad Pitt by her side while she recovered from the anesthetic. On February 16, Jolie had the main surgery -- which can last up to eight hours -- and everything went smoothly.
Dr. Funk went on to chronicle the star's journey, adding that she was pleased with Jolie's positive attitude following her months of surgeries.
"On day four after her mastectomies, I was pleased to find her not only in good spirits with bountiful energy, but with two walls in her house covered with freshly assembled storyboards for the next project she is directing," Funk continued in her post.
"The final operation occurred on April 27, 2013, ten weeks after the mastectomies: reconstruction of the breasts with implant, which went extremely well, bringing an end to her surgical journey," she wrote. "On Monday, the pathology returned and I called Angelina to confirm our biggest hope: all of the breast tissue was benign."
Dr. Funk also discussed Jolie's family history -- that her mother, Marcheline Bertrand, had breast cancer and died from ovarian cancer, and that Marcheline's mother was also diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Jolie, who was told by doctors that she had an 87 percent risk of contracting breast cancer, listed her own children as a primary motive for having the procedure.
The actress announced her journey in an op-ed piece, "My Medical Choice," which was published in the New York Times on May 14. Her double mastectomy, which Jolie said left only "small scars," decreased her risk of developing breast cancer from 87 percent to under 5 percent. She also wrote that she was "fortunate" to have her partner Brad Pitt for his support.
Pitt opened up and offered praise to Jolie on May 15, calling his partner "absolutely heroic" for undergoing the procedure.
"Having witnessed this decision firsthand, I find Angie's choice, as well as so many others like her, absolutely heroic," Pitt told London's Evening Standard. "I thank our medical team for their care and focus. ... All I want for is for her to have a long and healthy life, with myself and our children. This is a happy day for our family."