Katie Couric is opening up about her health.
The 65-year-old former NBC host shared on Instagram that she is currently being treated for breast cancer after being diagnosed in June.
“Every two minutes, a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer in the United States,” she wrote on Instagram alongside a photo of herself in the hospital. “On June 21st, I became one of them. As we approach #BreastCancerAwarenessMonth, I wanted to share my personal story with you all and encourage you to get screened and understand that you may fall into a category of women who needs more than a mammogram.”
Katie also penned a personal essay on her website detailing how we felt the moment she found out her diagnosis, shortly following her eighth wedding anniversary.
“I felt sick and the room started to spin,” she wrote. “I was in the middle of an open office, so I walked to a corner and spoke quietly, my mouth unable to keep up with the questions swirling in my head.”
She shared in the essay that she underwent surgery in July and began radiation treatments in September.
Katie reflected on her own diagnosis following her family history with cancer. Her first husband Jay Monahan died from colon cancer at 42, her sister passed away at 54 from pancreatic cancer and her mother-in-law from ovarian cancer. Both her mother and father have also had cancer.
“My mood quickly shifted from disbelief to resignation,” she wrote. “Given my family’s history of cancer, why would I be spared? My reaction went from ‘Why me?’ to ‘Why not me?'”
The former “Today” host also described what it was like sharing the news with her two daughters, Ellie, 31, and Carrie, 26.
“Finally, four days after I was diagnosed, I FaceTimed each of them,” she wrote. “I tried to be as reassuring as Dr. Newman. Their faces froze in disbelief. Then shock. Then they began to cry. ‘Don’t worry,’ I told Carrie then Ellie, ‘I’m going to be fine,’ trying to convince myself as well as them.
“They’d already lost one parent. The idea of losing another was unfathomable.”
She’s using her diagnosis to encourage other women to get their annual mammograms, “I was six months late this time. I shudder to think what might have happened if I had put it off longer. But just as importantly, please find out if you need additional screening.”
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