1 a Minute

Olivia Newton-John’s Push for Better Breast Health

October 5, 2010 at 12:18 pm , by

October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, and one celebrity who is committed to the cause and to early detection is Olivia Newton-John. While Olivia is well known for her talents as an actress and a singer, she was also diagnosed with breast cancer in 1992 and is now cancer-free. This month, Olivia is a part of 1 a Minute, a docudrama that follows a woman’s journey through breast cancer and hits theaters for one night only, October 6. After the film is over theaters will broadcast a live discussion about breast cancer, with Olivia among the panelists. We spoke with her recently about Liv Aid (a self-exam aid she’s created to encourage women to be more active in their breast health), as well as the cancer and wellness center she’s building, her new album, and her rockin’ guest role on Glee.

A breast self-exam led to your breast cancer diagnosis eighteen years ago. What do you want women to know about early detection, and why is it so important?

Early detection is key. Lumps are benign in the majority of cases, but if it’s a cancerous tumor, the earlier you find it and get it removed, the better the outcome. That’s why women should do regular breast self-examinations. They should have yearly mammograms after age 40 and girls should start doing regular self-exams after age 20. That sounds really young but Dr. Ernie Bodai, who’s our medical advisor on the Liv board, told us he’s getting more and more young girls who have been turned away by their doctors saying, it couldn’t possibly be, and by the time the tumor is found it’s large. Read more