Award-winning actress Marcia Cross, finest known for her function on the television series “Desperate Housewives,” opened up up come “CBS This Morning” around the stigma surrounding anal cancer and its possible link to she husband’s fight with cancer.

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In 2009, Cross sustained her husband, Tom Mahoney, with his neck cancer treatments until his remission. A year and also a half ago, a visit to her gynecologist because that a regimen exam revealed Cross had actually been diagnosed v anal cancer. She has due to the fact that been in remission and also is looking to finish the taboo surrounding the disease.

"I know there are human being who space ashamed. You have actually cancer! You need to then also feel ashamed? like you go something bad, you know, since it take it up residence in her anus? ns mean, come on, really. There"s enough on her plate,” claimed Cross.

Doctors suspect that both Cross’ and also her husband’s cancers came from the same type of human being papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually transmitted disease. The wasn’t till after she cancer therapy that she learned the same type of HPV that likely triggered she husband’s neck cancer can also cause anal cancer.

Dr. Julian Sanchez, cradle Oncology

Dr. Julian Sanchez, a surgeon in Cancer Center’s Gastrointestinal Oncology Clinic, states anal cancer primarily affects postmenopausal females and virtually all cases are led to by HPV. 

“HPV is much like countless other viruses in the human body that never really walk away,” claimed Sanchez. “You gain the initial infection when you’re young and also then together you age, the virus deserve to resurface. If you have actually HPV, the human body is typically able to keep the virus in ~ bay until it reappears later on in life. It can manifest an initial as a small bump or genital wart, but can come ago as a tumor.”

While over there are at this time no screening guidelines because that anal cancer, Sanchez strong recommends HPV vaccination. “The most necessary thing is prevention,” he said. “The HPV vaccine deserve to prevent the following generation from developing cervical, penile, oropharyngeal and anal cancers.” Cross claims she plan to gain her twin daughters, Savannah and Eden, 12, their very first HPV vaccine in a few weeks.

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The American Cancer culture estimates 8,300 people will be diagnosed through anal cancer in 2019. Back the an illness is rare, there space symptoms you have to be top top the lookout for: almost fifty percent of the patients v anal cancer will experience rectal bleeding, and also one 3rd of patients will have either anal pain or sensation of a rectal mass.