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Marcia Cross says her anal cancer is linked to HPV and husband's throat cancer

Actress Marcia Cross is trying to break the stigma associated with anal cancer.

Posted: Jun 6, 2019 12:20 PM
Updated: Jun 6, 2019 12:20 PM

Marcia Cross wants to end the shame surrounding anal cancer.

The "Desperate Housewives" star appeared on Wednesday's episode of "CBS This Morning" to discuss her diagnosis more than a year ago.

More than 1 in 5 adults has cancer-causing HPV, CDC reports

Cross, 57, said it came about as a result of a routine digital rectum exam during a visit to her gynecologist.

Marcia Cross shares cancer battle

"I was so not thinking anything was wrong because I didn't have any symptoms, and she gave me an exam and came around and said, 'Well, I just want you to know, whatever it is it's curable,'" Cross said. "It was like 'What? What are you talking about?'"

Cross is talking about her cancer battle to help destigmatize the disease.

"I know that there are people who are ashamed," she said. "You have cancer. Should you then also feel like ashamed like you did something bad because it took up residence in your anus?"

Her husband, actor Tom Mahoney, was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2009.

Doctors now suspect that Cross' cancer and Mahoney's came from the same type of human papillomavirus, known as HPV.

HPV can be transferred through sexual intercourse or skin-to-skin contact and can also cause cancer of the cervix and genitals.

Early immunization can prevent the types of HPV that most commonly cause cancer and Cross said she plans to get their 12-year-old twin daughters vaccinated.

Cancer-causing HPV plummeted in teens since vaccine, study finds

"My girls don't know it, but they're up for their first shot the end of the school year," Cross said.

Cross has completed radiation and chemotherapy and both she and her husband are in remission.

Correction: An earlier version of this story misspelled Marcia Cross' first name.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 37542

Reported Deaths: 1272
CountyConfirmedDeaths
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DeSoto200920
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Jones123149
Harrison118316
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Lauderdale97281
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Washington75313
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Hancock15213
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Tunica1263
George1253
Jefferson Davis1254
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Alcorn1112
Amite1113
Tishomingo1091
Quitman1011
Wilkinson1019
Perry914
Stone772
Choctaw764
Franklin572
Sharkey480
Benton470
Issaquena111
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 56441

Reported Deaths: 1136
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson7012170
Mobile5061140
Montgomery4599112
Tuscaloosa274353
Madison25359
Marshall205012
Shelby176425
Lee164737
Morgan13975
Baldwin134111
Walker111332
Elmore107622
Etowah106914
Dallas10189
DeKalb10017
Franklin95016
Unassigned77728
Autauga71515
Russell7130
Chambers68530
Cullman6686
Limestone6653
Butler65529
Houston6417
Tallapoosa63069
Lauderdale6006
St. Clair5983
Calhoun5545
Colbert5286
Escambia5128
Lowndes49222
Pike4805
Jackson4422
Coffee4364
Covington43512
Talladega4177
Dale4061
Barbour4022
Bullock37810
Hale36323
Marengo36111
Chilton3452
Blount3311
Clarke3236
Wilcox3158
Marion30914
Winston3095
Sumter29713
Pickens2786
Randolph2759
Monroe2683
Perry2552
Conecuh2388
Bibb2271
Macon2229
Choctaw22012
Greene2009
Henry1573
Washington1529
Lawrence1460
Crenshaw1343
Cherokee1317
Geneva1010
Fayette901
Clay892
Lamar891
Coosa671
Cleburne481
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