Eva Longoria is hoping to raise awareness for metastatic breast cancer.

The 42-year-old actress was struck with tragedy a few years ago when her sister Liza was diagnosed with the disease, and although she was lucky enough to catch it early, the process has still scared her family and pushed Eva to speak up on the subject.

Eva said: ''It was a couple years ago. I never said anything [at the time] because it was a private thing. It was my special needs sister too so she had a hard enough life as it is.

''She got it early, stage 1, mammogram. We were lucky. But one in three women who get breast cancer get metastatic [breast cancer], where it spreads throughout the body.

''So I thought, how many people don't know about this? And if I have a platform that can help women learn about this, if I have a platform that can help raise funds to find a cure for it, that's even better.

''It's definitely important because it's the least fielded, terminal cancer. We've had so many advances in preventative and early stage and that's great because there's nothing better than stage zero. But these women are stage four and they usually have a two year life expectancy. And there is no cure so these are the women in most need.''

And the 'Desperate Housewives' actress admits it can be difficult for women to put themselves first when it comes to their health, but has urged for women to ''be their own advocate''.

She added to People magazine: ''Women are horrible at putting themselves first. And the thing that suffers is your health.

''So I would encourage every woman that comes here to be their own advocate, because you gotta insist on that test or insist on that sonogram - insist on that extra step. And don't take no for an answer when it comes to your own health. That's a general life thing, not just health. It's the airplane thing, put your own mask on before helping others.''