Angelina Jolie I Got My Ovaries Removed I'm On a Mission to Live

3/24/2015 6:06 AM PDT

Angelina Jolie -- I Got My Ovaries Removed ... I'm On a Mission to Live

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Angelina Jolie  
took a second big step in minimizing a cancer risk which she has been living with for years ... she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed. 

Jolie told an emotional, dramatic story in a NY Times op-ed piece, in which she talked about her normal ... an 87% chance of developing breast cancer and a 50% chance of ovarian cancer, because she carries the BRCA1 gene mutation.

The actress took proactive steps with breast cancer 2 years ago by getting a double mastectomy.   She'd been seriously considering the second preventative procedure but she was pushed into action when medical tests revealed the possibility of ovarian cancer but in the early stages. 

Angelina underwent the procedure last week, and doctors found a small benign tumor on one ovary but no signs of cancer in her tissues. 

Jolie says she's now in menopause as a result of the surgery, and she can't have any more children. She stoically writes about the fact that she has to live with the possibility of cancer but adds, "I feel feminine, and grounded in the choices I am making for myself and my family.  l know my children will never have to say, 'Mom died of ovarian cancer.'"