Marcia Cross Speaks About Her Anal Cancer Journey

Dec 02, 2020
06:31 A.M.
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The stigma around anal cancer is why actor, Maria Cross, felt that she should talk about her cancer treatment. She shares some details in a new interview.


A lot of people still feel a lot of shame around anal cancel. Though it may be a challenging topic to talk about, it can be treated if detected early.

With taboo cancers, patients undergo painful treatments and uncomfortable side effects; there’s also the awkward task of making people feel comfortable about an embarrassing topic. Actress Maria Cross has spoken about her journey including some of the more uncomfortable aspects of treatment.

The Stigma Around Anal Cancer


Cross feels that sharing her experience may help more people feel comfortable talking about—and taking proper care of—their anuses. “I’m a big fan of the anus,” she said.

“I just have a lot of respect for this tiny, little two inches that makes our lives livable and pleasant…. We all have one. It’s nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed of.”

share Cross in an interview with Coping.

Marcia Cross Reveals ‘Gnarly’ Side Effects of Her Treatment


Marcia Crossrecenctly revealed details about her anal cancer. In an interview with Coping Magazine, the “Desperate Housewives” star reveals aspects of her diagnosis, treatment, and remission. In the interview, the actor highlights the ‘gnarly’ side effects that caused painful mouth sores and stomach problems.

“I thought I was doing great. And then out of nowhere, I felt this sting in my lip; it was excruciating. It was from the chemo…. I had gastric problems, mouth sores, all the terrible things that can happen with chemotherapy.”

says Cross.

Marcia Cross Addresses The Stigma


In the interview with Coping Magazine, Cross talks about how she didn’t initially want to talk about her diagnosis of cancer.

“I wanted to move on with my career and my life. But, as I was going through it, I read repeatedly about people who were ashamed, who were hiding, who were lying about their diagnosis. And on the other side, how doctors were not comfortable talking about it. And women were not given the follow-up care they needed.”

Shares Cross

Having The Conversation


Page Legett, a writer and anal cancer survivor, wrote about her experience when asked if she knew what had caused her cancer. She says that she had never shared the answer with a stranger, yet sharing the answer honestly, she realized, made it much easier to talk about after that.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), many as ninety-one percent of anal cancers are caused by human papillomavirus (HPV) every year. HPV is a sexually transmitted infection that can spread during vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who has the infection, the CDC says.

Marcia Cross Has Been In Remission


Cross was diagnosed with anal cancer in November 2017 during a routine gynecological checkup. Fortunately, the doctor detected the disease early, and her prognosis was good.

The actress went into remission in 2018 following twenty-eight radiation treatments and two weeks of chemotherapy.