Linda Evangelista Opens Up About Her Breast Cancer Diagnosis

In a recent interview, supermodel Linda Evangelista revealed her past battle with breast cancer. Diagnosed in 2018, she opted for a double mastectomy due to unfavorable margins and other health factors, believing she had triumphed over the disease.

However, in July 2022, she found a lump in her chest, marking her first public discussion of this second cancer scare. Evangelista emphasized her determination to fight cancer and her celebration of life. 

Keep on reading to learn more.

Linda Evangelista Opens Up About Her Cancer Battle

Linda Evangelista Opens Up About Breast Cancer Battle And Her Double Mastectomy

In a recent interview with WSJ MagazineLinda Evangelista opened up about her past battle with breast cancer, revealing her 2018 diagnosis, which led to a double mastectomy.

Recalling her diagnosis at the time, Evangelista said during her interview, “The margins were not good, and due to other health factors, without hesitation, because I wanted to put everything behind me and not to have to deal with this, I opted for a bilateral mastectomy. Thinking I was good and set for life. Breast cancer was not going to kill me.”

However, despite initially thinking she had conquered the disease, the 58-year-old supermodel faced another scare in July 2022 when she found a lump in her chest. This revelation marks the “Catwalk” actress’s first public discussion of her cancer experience.

‘I Don’t Want It To Look Pretty. I Want You To Excavate’ 

Linda Evangelista at the 2015 Fragrance Foundation Awards

Recalling her experience, Evangelista shared that her oncologist was initially “unimpressed” but opted for an MRI, which revealed a need for a biopsy. The invasive procedure confirmed cancer in her pectoral muscle.

According to the “Prêt-à-Porter” actress, her response to her doctor was clear, “Dig a hole in my chest,” she said, per Daily Mail. “I don’t want it to look pretty. I want you to excavate. I want to see a hole in my chest when you’re done. Do you understand me? I’m not dying from this.”

Despite being informed of a good prognosis, Evangelista questioned why it wasn’t considered great, learning about her unfavorable Oncotype score, indicating a risk of recurrence.

Resigning to fate, she added, “I know I have one foot in the grave, but I’m totally in celebration mode.” She also noted that “only a handful of people knew” about her cancer journey.

Linda Evangelista’s Botched Face Procedure

inda Evangelista attends the "Goddess, Party of the Year" Costume Institute Spring 2003

Evangelista has faced health challenges before, notably a botched cosmetic procedure that left her with a “brutally disfigured” face. This resulted from a CoolSculpting treatment meant to reduce fat cells but had the opposite effect, causing enlargement. The experience led to six years of seclusion and depression.

In an interview, Evangelista told Vogue she was “so depressed” that she “hated” herself following the botched procedure, which caused her to lose her livelihood. In February 2022, she underwent two liposuction surgeries to rectify the issue and publicly declared she was done living in shame.

In September 2022, the supermodel revealed a lawsuit against Zeltiq Aesthetics for grievous injuries, which has since been settled. 

Linda Evangelista attends Vanity Fair's party after the 76th Academy Award

She stated about her experience, “If I had known, side effects may include losing your livelihood and you’ll end up so depressed that you hate yourself… I wouldn’t have taken that risk.”

Evangelista continued, “Am I cured mentally? Absolutely not. But I’m so grateful for the support I got from my friends and my industry… you’re not going to see me in a swimsuit, that’s for sure.”

While mentally not fully recovered, she appreciates the support she received but anticipates difficulties in her industry due to her physical changes. “It’s going to be difficult to find jobs with things protruding from me; without retouching, or squeezing into things, or taping things or compressing or tricking,” she added.

Salma Hayek Supported The Supermodel Through Chemo

Salma Hayek at the 2023 Time 100 Gala

Evangelista also discussed her close bond with Salma Hayek during her conversation with WSJ magazine. Hayek is married to François-Henri Pinault, the CEO of Kering and the father of Evangelista’s son, Augustin James, who is now 16.

The supermodel expressed deep admiration for Hayek, emphasizing their shared values of family and positivity.

She described Hayek as a “woman’s woman” and went further to highlight her generosity and kindness, adding, “Just like me, (she’s) so family-oriented, and so positive. She’s a blessing to us…. She was very, very generous and kind to me while I was going through my chemo.”

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