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Nine years after her secret fight with ovarian cancer, Kathy Bates is opening up about her new battle with breast cancer. The actress has undergone a double mastectomy to remove the cancer, which doctors diagnosed several weeks ago.
"After much consideration, I underwent a double mastectomy," Bates, 64, told People on Wednesday. "Luckily, I don't have to undergo radiation or chemo. My family calls me Kat because I always land on my feet and thankfully this is no exception."
Bates, a 2012 Emmy nominee for Harry's Law and Two and a Half Men, says she is "looking forward to getting back to work doing what I love to do."
"My doctors have assured me I'm going to be around for a long time," says the Oscar winner.
In 2004, Bates faced a life-threatening battle with ovarian cancer -- which she didn't share with the public until an appearance this March on Anderson Cooper's show Anderson. Because she was working on a movie at the time (Little Black Book with Brittany Murphy) and dealing with insurance complications, Bates decided it would be more professional to keep things quiet. Determined to handle it privately, she ended up undergoing chemotherapy treatments by herself.
"I guess it's something I felt I had to face on my own," the actress told Cooper in March. "Nobody else really knows what you're going through except another cancer patient. Even though your family is supportive and surrounds you."
However, she expressed hope that if the situation ever came around again, she would handle it differently.
"I admire people who have been open like Melissa Etheridge and women I see walking around facing it with out wigs and all of that stuff. I think I would be more courageous next time," she said.
Sure enough, just weeks after she discovered she had breast cancer Bates courageously went public with her diagnosis and treatment. Regardless of whether she wins an Emmy next Sunday, she deserves a big round of applause.