Shannen Doherty smiled boldly as she headed to a restaurant in Malibu, California, on Thursday amid her ongoing battle with cancer.
The 52-year-old actress wore a dark blue jumper and jeans to a meal with her mother Rosa after revealing earlier this month that her stage four breast cancer had spread to her brain.
Shannen completed her casual outfit with white sneakers and accessories with mirrored sunglasses.
She also wore a black jacket and matching bag and had her short dark hair parted down the middle.
The Beverly Hills 90210 revealed the diagnosis on Instagram earlier this month, uploading a video clip showing her talking to a medical professional before undergoing surgery to have a tumor removed from her head.
Cancer battle: Shannen Doherty smiled as she went to a restaurant in Malibu, California, on Thursday amid her ongoing battle with cancer
January 16, 2023. Operation. I had a tumor in my head that they wanted to remove and also a biopsy. I’m obviously trying to be brave but I’m terrified,” she wrote to her roughly 2 million followers.
In the clip, Shannen lay down as doctors placed a blue mold over her face and head. They made her bite to make sure it adhered to her mouth and chin.
Shannen began to cry as they held down the edges of the mask and pinned them to a board behind her head before placing her in the machine.
The actress continued: “January 12, the first round of radiation took place. My fear is clear.’
Radiation treatment uses “energy beams to destroy cancer cells” and can “target all or part of the brain, depending on a person’s diagnosis,” according to NYU Langone Health.
“I am extremely claustrophobic and a lot has happened in my life,” Shannen wrote. “I’m lucky to have great doctors like Dr. Amin Mirahdi and the great technicians at Cedar Sinai.
But that fear…. The turmoil….. the timing of it all…. This is what cancer can look like,” she concluded.
Shannen filed for divorce from her husband, Kurt Iswarienko, 48, in April after 11 years of marriage.
With mother: The 52-year-old actress wore a dark blue jumper and jeans to a meal with her mother Rosa after revealing earlier this month that her stage four breast cancer had spread to her brain
Cancer surgery: The Beverly Hills 90210 revealed the diagnosis on Instagram earlier this month, uploading a video clip showing her talking to a medical professional before undergoing surgery to have a tumor removed from her head
Divorce filing: Shannen filed for divorce from her husband, Kurt Iswarienko, 48, in April after 11 years of marriage, shown together in September 2016 in Los Angeles
The official divorce papers obtained by TMZ revealed that the couple has been separated since January.
Through her publicist, Leslie Sloane, Doherty cited the reason for the divorce, claiming Iswarienko’s agent was “deeply involved” in their divorce.
“Divorce is the last thing Shannen wants,” her rep told the publication at the time. “Unfortunately, she felt she had no choice.”
Doherty and Iswarienko exchanged vows and were married in October 2011 in Malibu.
Previously, she was married to actor Ashley Hamilton from 1993 to 1994, and her second marriage was to poker player Rick Salomon from 2002 to 2003.
Cancer cells that spread to the brain are unique in that they acquire so many genetic mutations that they can cross the blood-brain barrier, which is an obstacle to many effective cancer treatments, including chemo.
Radiation therapy disrupts the blood-brain barrier, a network of blood vessels and tissue that serves as a protective layer lining the inside of the brain. It protects the brain from toxins.
Radiation, unlike many cancer treatments, can cross that impenetrable blood-brain barrier to treat recurrent cancer and cancer that has spread to other parts of the body.
Cult Classic: Winona Ryder, Lisanne Falk, Kim Walker and Shannen are featured in a promo still for the 1988 film Heathers
Hit show: Alyssa Milano, Shannen and Holly Marie Combs are featured in a 1998 promo for Charmed
Lead role: Shannen had a starring role in director Kevin Smith’s 1995 film Mallrats which also starred Ben Affleck and Claire Forlani
When treating breast cancer that has spread to the brain, oncologists will likely use a type of radiation therapy called WBRT (whole brain RT), which consists of 10 to 15 treatments over a few weeks.
While this is the gold standard for treating multiple brain metastases, it may only extend life by about six months.
Oncologists will custom fit a thermoplastic mask over the patient’s face before starting treatment to keep that part of the body still during the sessions. It starts as a warm, wet gauze on the skin that hardens and cools after about 15 minutes to hold the head in place.
Shannen’s credits also include Heathers, Mallrats and Charmed.