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Prophylactic

Angelina Jolie's announcement about preventive surgery ...


When:

Lookups spiked on March 24, 2015.

prophylactic-angelina-jolie

Why:

Angelina Jolie's decision to announce that she had undergone surgery to remove her ovaries in order to reduce a risk of inherited cancer was praised as a courageous way to inform people about possible preventive treatments that may help others. Two years ago, she had a double mastectomy for similar reasons, and also made that decision public.

When used as an adjective, prophylactic means "designed to prevent disease" or "preventive." It comes from the Greek verb that means "to guard."

The related noun prophylaxis means "measures designed to preserve health (as of an individual or of society) and prevent the spread of disease."



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