“Sex and the City” Star Cynthia Nixon Struggled With the Same Cancer as Her Mom Did, and Why She Chose to Fight Alone

7 months ago

Cynthia Nixon has had an incredible acting career, but not many are familiar with her personal hardships. She quietly fought breast cancer, choosing to keep it to herself. When asked about her decision to keep it private and her lack of fear, her response was truly poignant.

She has become an iconic figure in the industry.

Cynthia Nixon, widely recognized for her role as Miranda Hobbes on the popular HBO series Sex and the City, is not only a highly accomplished television actor but also an inspiring individual. Throughout her vibrant career, she has been honored with numerous accolades, including two Primetime Emmys, a Tony Award, and even a Grammy Award.

What many fans may not know is that Cynthia Nixon faced a personal battle with breast cancer, which she bravely fought behind the scenes while simultaneously starring in an Off-Broadway play, showcasing her incredible strength.

Nixon’s cancer was detected early during a mammogram.

Nixon first discovered she had breast cancer when she went for a routine mammogram at the age of 40. Since her mother had also battled the same disease, indicating a strong family history, she had been getting mammograms every year since she turned 35.

According to Nixon, the tumor in her breast was extremely subtle and hard to detect. Her doctor informed her after the diagnosis, “You know, I wouldn’t have thought anything of this. It is so small, except it wasn’t there on any of your previous mammograms.”

Junot/Broadimage/EAST NEWS

This experience made Nixon realize the importance of early screening for breast cancer. She emphasized the significance of undergoing regular mammograms, starting from a young age. Nixon believed that if she had started getting mammograms at the age of 40, they might not have been able to detect the cancer.

But she wasn’t scared of her diagnosis.

Being diagnosed with cancer at a young age was a jolting experience for Nixon. However, she quickly embraced her diagnosis and made peace with it. Nixon expressed her gratitude for the early detection, stating that finding it at an early stage allowed for immediate action to be taken.

“I’ve learned that if you catch breast cancer early, the chances are overwhelmingly good that you’ll be cured,” Cynthia explained. During an interview, she urged women to face their fears and prioritize regular mammograms. Nixon conveyed that the true fear lies in avoiding screenings due to a reluctance to confront the truth.

She underwent surgery between play performances.

Despite her cancer diagnosis, Nixon remained committed to her professional endeavors. Choosing to prioritize her work commitments, she opted for an immediate lumpectomy to remove the tumor. Luckily, she returned to the stage the following week.

Nixon’s decision to keep her surgery private stemmed from her desire to avoid distracting the audience during the play. In an interview, she shared that she didn’t want people to know about her operation because it might affect their focus. To accommodate her theatrical schedule, the medical procedure was scheduled on a Sunday, ensuring she wouldn’t miss any performances.

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”

Following the lumpectomy, Nixon underwent six and a half weeks of radiation treatment as part of her recovery. However, she was fortunate enough to avoid chemotherapy, according to her account. Her experience with breast cancer serves as a testament to the fact that a cancer diagnosis does not define a person.

Preview photo credit Sex and the City / HBO and co-producers, Junot/Broadimage/EAST NEWS


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I'm so happy for her that she's recovered and doing well. I can't imagine having to go through it all alone but I understand her desire for anonymity. I wish her continued success, wellness, and happiness.


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