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Julia Louis-Dreyfus uses breast cancer diagnosis to make important point

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Julia Louis-Dreyfus, the award-winning star of Veep, has announced that she has breast cancer.

“Just when you thought…” she began a message on Twitter, but left the sentiment unsaid, instead posting a straightforward letter underneath the caption.

“1 in 8 women get breast cancer,” she wrote. “Today, I’m the one.”

Read more: “What having terminal cancer taught me about seizing the day”

Louis-Dreyfus – who plays an ineffectual vice-president in the political comedy – continued: “The good news is that I have the most glorious group of supportive and caring family and friends, and fantastic insurance through my union.

“The bad news is that not all women are so lucky, so let’s fight all cancers and make universal health care a reality.”

Louis-Dreyfus’ announcement was met with an outpouring of support from fellow actors – including Christina Applegate, a cancer survivor herself – and celebrities, not to mention her fans.

Real-life politicians Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden also sent their support, too:

HBO, the network behind Veep, also issued a statement, saying: “We have every confidence she will get through this with her usual tenacity and undaunted spirit, and look forward to her return to health and to HBO for the final season of Veep.”

Read more: The top 50 most empowering feminist quotes of all time

The Associated Press reported that Louis-Dreyfus learnt of the diagnosis just a day after the 2017 Emmys, where she won her eighth Emmy for her starring role in Veep.

The actor – who picked up a record-breaking sixth Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress earlier this year – used her news to call for universal healthcare in the US.

This comes at a time when President Donald Trump continues to push through his reforms in an attempt to repeal Obamacare – a move which could dramatically reduce many US citizens’ access to safe and affordable healthcare.

As actor Adam Best pointed out in a tweet, “Few people could get diagnosed with cancer and immediately think of others instead of themselves.”

“Julia Louis-Dreyfus is such a powerhouse,” he added.

Read more: “Dear UK, the NHS is awesome”: a letter from an American doctor

One in eight women in the UK will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in their lifetime, according to Breast Cancer UK.

Scientists at University College London have warned that women should check themselves regularly for lumps, as well as keep an eye out for other changes that could be a potential indicators of breast cancer.

These warning signs include changes to nipples, swellings in the armpit, and sores on the skin of the breast.

Images: Rex Features


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