Olivia Munn says she 'absolutely broke down' when she saw her body after a double mastectomy

Olivia Munn says she 'absolutely broke down' when she saw her body after a double mastectomy
  • Olivia Munn, 43, reflects on her emotions after undergoing a double mastectomy for breast cancer.

  • "I saw myself for the first time and I was in shock," Munn told People.

  • Cases of breast cancer among people under 50 years old are on the rise.

Olivia Munn, 43, remembers the shock she experienced when she saw her body for the first time after a double mastectomy.

The "X-Men: Apocalypse" actor — who was diagnosed with breast cancer in April 2023 — spoke with People about her medical journey over the past months.

Munn said she underwent four surgeries, including a 10-hour double mastectomy, as part of her treatment plan.

"I really tried to be prepared, but the truth is that nothing could prepare me for what I would feel like, what it would look like, how I would handle it emotionally," Munn said. "It was a lot tougher than I expected."

Post-op, she wasn't able to process what she had lost because of the bandages and the pain, Munn said. It wasn't until a week after her surgery at the doctor's office that she finally saw her body properly.

"I saw myself for the first time and I was in shock. It was incredibly hard," Munn said. "And the doctor was telling me how fantastic it looked, which made it even harder because 'fantastic' is top. You don't get better than fantastic, so I thought, 'This doesn't get better.'"

She added that she took in what the doctor said without emotion but couldn't keep it together when she got home.

"When I got home, I undressed and looked in the mirror again, and that's when I just absolutely broke down," she said. "I just thought, 'Oh, my gosh, this is what I look like, and I don't want to look at myself right now.'"

While things look better now that she's had reconstruction surgery, she said, Munn knows "it's not the same."

"But that's OK because I'm here," Munn added. "I'm extremely happy that I had the option to have a double mastectomy. I'm extremely happy that I got the opportunity to fight."

Munn isn't the only celebrity who has spoken out about getting a mastectomy.

In 2012, Sharon Osbourne revealed to Hello magazine that she underwent a double mastectomy when she realized she carried a gene that made her predisposed to breast cancer.

"I've had cancer before, and I didn't want to live under that cloud," Osbourne, who had colon cancer in 2002, said. "I decided to just take everything off and had a double mastectomy."

Angelina Jolie said in a 2013 opinion piece in The New York Times that she decided to get a preventive double mastectomy when she found out she, too, carried a gene that increased her risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer.

"I wanted to write this to tell other women that the decision to have a mastectomy was not easy," Jolie wrote. "But it is one I am very happy that I made. My chances of developing breast cancer have dropped from 87% to under 5%. I can tell my children that they don't need to fear they will lose me to breast cancer."

In the US, about 240,000 cases of breast cancer are diagnosed in women each year and about 2,100 in men, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

While most breast cancers are usually found in women who are 50 or older, cases among younger people are on the rise.

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