Angelina Jolie made a surprising revelation early Tuesday: she has undergone a double mastectomy as a preventive measure. 

She told The New York Times, that she is a carrier of a "faulty" gene, BRCA1, which increases her risk of developing breast cancer and ovarian cancer. As a result, she discloses, she decided to have a preventive double mastectomy, a process that began in early February.

Jolie, whose mother Marcheline Bertrand died of cancer in 2007 at age 56, tells readers, "I am writing about it now because I hope that other women can benefit from my experience."

The 37-year-old actress notes that she is "fortunate" to have a partner, her fiancé Brad Pitt, who is "so loving and supportive." She adds, "We knew this was the right thing to do for our family and that it would bring us closer. And it has."

Jolie says that as a result of her surgery, her risk of developing breast cancer has dropped from 87 percent to under 5 percent. She says, "I can tell my children that they don’t need to fear they will lose me to breast cancer....[T]hey know that I love them and will do anything to be with them as long as I can. On a personal note, I do not feel any less of a woman. I feel empowered that I made a strong choice that in no way diminishes my femininity."

I'm not sure how I feel about this. She has shown courage in taking this drastic measure. If you were in the same situation would you do the same? I HATE cancer. I have lost too many of my loved ones to cancer, but I don't know if I would be this brave. Would you?