In what was a shocker to both the audience and apparently to her best friend Gayle King, Oprah Winfrey announced at O Magazine's annual conference in Los Angeles last month that she had recently weathered a breast cancer scare, according to The New York Times.
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She did not share much detail, aside from saying that it had only been a false alarm and that she is in good health. According to the Times, Gayle King, who was onstage with Oprah at the moment, appeared to be surprised and upset at the announcement. One woman on stage noticing King's surprise, chided Oprah for not telling her friend in private and asked her to apologize in front of the audience.
Oprah's representatives did not respond to Yahoo! Shine's request for comment.
Oprah's health scare is just one of many struggles the media mogul has dealt with over the past year. Her popular television show ended after 25 years on the air and her new cable network, OWN, continues to strive for a foothold in ratings and audience.
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In recent interviews and appearances, Oprah has criticized the press's characterization of the network's troubles. At the conference she claimed "the press tried to cut me off at the knees," and appeared to "bristle at questions about the challenges the magazine has confronted."
O Magazine has seen a 22 percent decrease in newsstand sales since Oprah's television show ended. They had predicted a 25 percent decrease, The New York Times reports. And though Oprah hopes to attract younger readers to the magazine, at the conference she made it very clear that she would shutter the magazine if it stopped being profitable.
Though the press may be eager for a story of failure, it's worth noting that OWN is Oprah's second chapter. At 58, she has built an empire and is one of the wealthiest women in the world. Most might feel content to retire after achieving that level of success, but not Oprah.
The reason why Oprah didn't tell Gayle King in private about her breast cancer scare, before announcing it to the audience at the conference, is a mystery. Perhaps she felt she had more important things to address.