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Jane Fonda diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

Salon 9/2/2022 Kelly McClure

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Jane Fonda attends Women in Film's Annual Award Ceremony at The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures on October 06, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. Emma McIntyre/Getty Images

Actress and activist Jane Fonda announced on Instagram Friday that she's been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, which she describes as being "a very treatable cancer." 

"I'm doing chemo for 6 months and am handling the treatments quite well and, believe me, I will not let any of this interfere with my climate activism," Fonda says in the written statement on her diagnosis. "Cancer is a teacher and I'm paying attention to the lessons it holds for me. One thing it's shown me already is the importance of community. Of growing and deepening one's community so that we are not alone. And the cancer, along with my age --almost 85-- definitely teaches the importance of adapting to new realities."

As detailed by the Mayo Clinic, "Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma is a type of cancer that begins in your lymphatic system, which is part of the body's germ-fighting immune system. In non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, white blood cells called lymphocytes grow abnormally and can form growths (tumors) throughout the body." 

Fonda highlights in her statement Friday that 80% of people survive this type of cancer.

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"I'm also lucky because I have health insurance and access to the best doctors and treatments," Fonda says. "I realize, and it's painful, that I am privileged in this. Almost every family in America has had to deal with cancer at one time or another and far too many don't have access to the quality health care I am receiving and this is not right. We also need to be talking much more not just about cures but about causes so we can eliminate them. For example, people need to know that fossil fuels cause cancer. So do pesticides, many of which are fossil fuel-based, like mine."

In March of 2022, Fonda launched a political action committee to work against politicians with ties to Big Oil. This PAC was put forth in an effort to help with the fossil fuel problems she mentions in the statement relating to her cancer. Her main goal in going up against fossil fuels is to do "whatever it takes to defeat the political allies of the fossil fuel industry, no matter which side of the aisle they're on," per a video statement issued by Fonda in March.

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"The midterms are looming, and they are beyond consequential so you can count on me to be right there together with you as we grow our army of climate champions," Fonda says in the closing of her diagnosis statement.

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