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Olivia Munn has revealed she was put into medically induced menopause after being diagnosed with breast cancer.

The 43-year-old actor spoke candidly about her diagnosis and the surgeries she’d had since during an interview with People, published on 17 April. In March, she took to Instagram to reveal that she was diagnosed with breast cancer in April 2023, before she had a double mastectomy – a surgical removal of both breasts – and four other surgeries.

Speaking to People, Munn opened up about her different types of treatment, noting that she began hormone suppression therapy in November. Although she did this to lessen further risk of her cancer recurring, she said the treatment also put her into medically induced menopause.

“I’m constantly thinking it’s hot, my hair is thinning, and I’m tired a lot,” she said, while describing some of her symptoms of menopause.

As noted by the Mayo Clinic, menopause is “the time that marks the end of your menstrual cycles,” with symptoms ranging from night sweats, thinning hair and dry skin, and sleep problems.

However, while opening up about her cancer treatments, Munn noted that she doesn’t necessarily have an issue with going through menopause now.

“I’m basically on a treatment of suppressing all my hormones, so I will go into menopause. And I will shut down all the hormone production in my tissue and my ovaries,” she told People. “And that’s again, more problems. But I figured, as a woman, I can’t escape menopause. So I’d rather just take it on now and tackle it head on.”

The actor – who shares a two-year-old son, Malcolm, with boyfriend John Mulaney – also opened up about privately undergoing her double mastectomy after being diagnosed with breast cancer. She further detailed how she tried to emotionally prepare herself for the surgery and how she’d feel afterward.

“There’s so much information, and you’re making these huge decisions for the rest of your life,” she said. “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 and how I would handle it emotionally. It was a lot tougher than I expected.”

Following the double mastectomy in May 2023, the X-Men: Apocalypse star waited a few months to have her reconstructive surgery, in order to give herself the time to recover. She also specified that before that surgery, she was still keeping the details of her health off Instagram.

“Keeping it private for as long as I did allowed me time to fight without any outside noise at all,” she explained.

She further recalled the reconstruction she got for her breasts, noting that she asked for her doctors to “go smaller”.

“It’s so important to say what you want out loud – and don’t stop,” Munn explained. “Even as the anaesthesia was making its way into my body, the last thing I said was ‘Please go smaller.’”

Speaking to People, Munn went on to acknowledge that ever since her breast cancer diagnosis, her partner has been with her every step of the way. She also praised Mulaney for supporting their son amid this challenging time.

“It would’ve felt like climbing an iceberg without him,” she said. “I don’t think he had a moment to himself, between being an incredibly hands-on father and going to and from the hospital – taking Malcolm to the park, putting him to nap, driving to Cedars-Sinai, hanging out with me, going home, putting Malcolm to bed, coming back to me. And he did it all happily.”

She further specified that throughout the last year, Malcolm has continued to bring so much joy to her life, explaining that when she’s with him, her “brain doesn’t think about being sick”.

“I’m just so happy with him. And it puts a lot of stuff into perspective. Because if my body changes, I’m still his mom,” she said. “If I have hot flashes, I’m still his mom. If I lose my hair, I’m still his mom. That’s really what matters the most to me. I get to be here for him.”

In March, Munn took to Instagram to reveal that she had breast cancer, while recalling her process of being diagnosed.

She wrote that she and her sister were undergoing genetic testing for 90 different cancer genes including BRCA, the most well-known breast cancer gene. Although both Munn and her sister tested negative for the gene and had a clear mammogram, her doctor decided to calculate her Breast Cancer Risk Assessment Score just in case. “The fact that she did saved my life,” Munn added, noting that her risk was 37 per cent.

Because of that per centage, she was then sent for an MRI, ultrasound, and biopsy, which revealed she had Luminal B cancer in both breasts. Her post explained that this is an “aggressive, fast moving cancer”.

“I went from feeling completely fine one day, to waking up in a hospital bed after a 10-hour surgery the next,” she wrote. “I’m lucky. We caught it with enough time that I had options.”

After expressing her gratitude for Mulaney, she ended her post by thanking all of the health professionals involved in her surgeries including her physicians, the staff at Cedars-Sinai and Saint John’s in Santa Monica, California. She also called her OBGYN, Dr Thaïs Aliabadi, her “guardian angel”.

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