After surviving anal cancer, Marcia Cross is determined to spread awareness surrounding the potentially fatal disease. While attending the Farrah Fawcett Foundation’s Tex-Mex Fiesta event on Friday, September 6, the Desperate Housewives alum opened up about beating the disease and how she plans to change society’s view of it.
“It’s not a job that anyone really wants,” the 57-year-old beauty shared with Us Weekly while kicking off the weekend at the Beverly Hills event. “It’s not particularly glamorous to be the face of anal cancer.”
Now that Marcia is in remission, she told the outlet she feels it’s her duty to educate the public and help destigmatize the perception that anal cancer is a taboo illness. The Melrose Place alum even admitted she has a newfound love for her derrière and hopes that her outlook will inspire others to appreciate theirs too.
“I want to tell you that I now love and cherish my anus and you should all love and cherish yours,” she insisted. “We should all stop being embarrassed about it because we’re gifted with one beautiful anus it does an amazing job.”
Marcia even explained why she’s dedicating herself to beating the shame surrounding anal cancer. “Think about [your anus] every time it works for you and there’s nothing to be ashamed of,” she urged at the event for Farrah, who sadly passed away from anal cancer in 2009. “Educate yourselves on the HPV virus — that’s really the bigger calling to me, because that causes 5 percent of our cancers and we all need to be up to speed on all of that.”
According to WebMD, anal cancer is “an uncommon malignancy that starts in the anus” and is typically (80 percent) diagnosed in people over the age 60. The American Cancer Society estimates nearly 8,200 cases of anal cancer were diagnosed in 2017, while nearly 1,100 deaths occurred that year because of anal cancer.
During her battle, Marcia kept fans in the dark regarding the type of cancer she was up against. However, she announced on social media in September 2018, that she officially beat her disease. In her post, the One Life to Live actress candidly reflected on her battle and revealed she had actually been facing anal cancer.
“I am ecstatically alive and what interests me post cancer is #AUTHENTICY. #VULNERABILITY. #TRANSPARENCY. And of course #LOVE,” she wrote on Instagram at the time. “On that note, if you were wondering, I had #analcancer. I know, right?!”
She concluded, “Thank you again for your love and for sharing your personal stories of struggle with #cancer and #hair loss and getting your footing in the world. Always, Marcia.”
We wish Marcia all the health and happiness going forward!