At a time when we could all use a little support (at a distance, at least) Shannen Doherty is giving a shoutout to her pal for helping her through her darkest days of chemotherapy, and now coronavirus. Doherty, who is currently battling stage 4 breast cancer, shared a heartwarming ode to her bestie on Instagram over the weekend.
Shannen Doherty’s Experience with Hair Loss from Chemo
In a caption for a video of Doherty’s friend, Anne Marie Kortright, buzzing her head, the “90210” actress said that she called Kortright during her first cancer battle, emotionally distraught when her hair first started falling out in clumps during chemotherapy.Read More
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This was a few years ago. Chemo resulted in hair falling out in clumps. I was devastated….I was sick, worried, stressed and the hair loss was just yet another reminder of how bad things were. I called @annemkortright and she said to me hang tight I’ll be right there. She jumped in her car, went and bought a shaver and got to me super quick. She made a horrible thing touching, funny, memorable, bearable. I have relied on her for countless years and she always shows up. Yes she’s beautiful but beauty is nothing if it isn’t outshined by the beauty inside. She radiates beauty from the inside and out. I know that my life is better with her in it. Many feel the same I’m sure but everyone should know that she is one of a kind. AM…. I treasure you, I depend on you and I love you so much. I hope I give back some of what you give to me and everyone else you impact. Thank you for being my friend. I love you to the moon and back. Damn isolation!! I wish I could be with you to hug you and share on this very special day…. the day you were born. Happy birthday. #bff #bananas #partneringood
“She jumped in her car, went and bought a shaver and got to me super quick. She made a horrible thing touching, funny, memorable, bearable. I have relied on her for countless years and she always shows up,” Doherty wrote. The post was in honor of Kortright’s birthday, but it touches on a topic so many people living with cancer can relate to — finding the support you need from friends and loved ones during the cancer journey.
Shannen Doherty’s Cancer Journey
The 48-year-old actress was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015. She initially attempted to treat the disease without a mastectomy — a surgery to remove both breasts — or aggressive treatments, but the treatment plan changed once her doctors realized her cancer had spread to her lymph nodes. She ended up having to undergo a mastectomy, estrogen therapy treatments, chemotherapy, and radiation before she was declared cancer-free in 2018.
Her cancer relapsed in 2019, and by that time it had progressed to stage 4 — or metastatic — breast cancer. Doherty initially opted to keep the news private as she was working on the “90210” reboot — which has since been canceled — but did eventually go public about the diagnosis in a Feb. 4 interview with ABC’s Amy Robach, who is a cancer survivor herself.
In the weeks since going public, Doherty has kept her fans updated about the ups and downs of dealing with a cancer recurrence. In the past week or so, since the coronavirus began rapidly spreading across the U.S. and government and health officials began urging Americans to stay inside, Doherty even shared a comical post about her own isolation and social distancing.
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While we don’t know the specifics of Doherty’s breast cancer, the treatment for metastatic disease can vary significantly depending on features of an individual woman’s cancer. However, it’s safe to assume that due to the disease, and the possibility that the actress is living with a compromised immune system, extreme caution during the pandemic is a wise choice.
Treatment options for metastatic breast cancer include hormone therapy, chemotherapy and targeted drugs. Sometimes surgery and/or radiation is considered. The goal is to keep you as stable as possible, slow the tumor growth and improve quality of life.