Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie arrive at the 84th Annual Academy Awards February 26, 2012 (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Angelina Jolie says she's had a preventive double mastectomy after learning she carried a gene that makes it extremely likely she'll get breast cancer.
Jolie authored an op-ed for Tuesday's New York Times where she writes that in April she finished three months of surgical procedures to remove both breasts.
The 37-year-old Jolie says she made the choice after her mother died of breast cancer at age 56, and after doctors told her she had an 87 percent chance of contracting it herself.
She says she's kept the process private but is writing about it now with hopes she can help other women.
Many women have chosen preventive mastectomy since the advent of genetic breast cancer testing, but the move and announcement are unprecedented from a star so young and widely known.
Messages left for Jolie representatives were not immediately returned.