"It was strange — and kind of poetic — that my reproductive organs, of all things, had cancer," she wrote in a 2019 essay for InStyle. "But it was also an amazing affirmation that pain finds its way to exactly the right place in the body if you don't deal with it.
"Since I hadn't been paying attention to my own vulnerabilities, my pain from the rape lodged itself in my uterus. No one else around me had cancer. That was a rude awakening," she added.
Once she was in remission, Drescher began a phase she called Life After Cancer that found her penning a memoir, starting a cancer foundation and becoming a women's health advocate.
"Suddenly I was a person who couldn't have children. But I gave birth to a book, 'Cancer Schmancer,' and launched a movement with the goal of transforming people from patients into medical consumers," she wrote.
Now, 21 years after "The Nanny" went off the air, Drescher stars in the new NBC sitcom "Indebted." She plays Debbie, a lovable, debt-ridden grandmother who's forced, along with her husband Stew (Steven Weber), to move back in with their son Dave (Adam Pally) and his family.
Though the show originally depicted Debbie as overbearing, Drescher put her own spin on the character.
"People are tuning in to see who they're used to seeing," she told The Cut. "You want to get some heavy character actress, older woman, to be this pain in the a-- in the house and have this, you know, antagonistic relationship with the daughter-in-law like they did in 'Everybody Loves Raymond,' be my guest. But that's not me."
Fran Drescher through the years
Fran Drescher through the years
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 14: Actress Fran Drescher visits SiriusXM Studios on June 14, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Matthew Eisman/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 7: Fran Drescher attends Gilt x Livelihood Launch Event at 6 St. John's Lane on February 7, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Aurora Rose/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 19: Comedian Fran Drescher attends the Busboys and Poets' Peace Ball: Voices of Hope and Resistance at National Museum Of African American History & Culture on January 19, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images for Busboys and Poets)
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 13: Fran Drescher performing in The American Pops Orchestra '75 Years of Streisand' at the George Washington University Lisner Auditorium on January 13, 2017 in Washington, D.C.. (Photo by Walter McBride/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 13: Fran Drescher attends the After Party Reception for The American Pops Orchestra '75 Years of Streisand' at the George Washington University Lisner Auditorium on January 13, 2017 in Washington, D.C. (Photo by Walter McBride/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JULY 20: Actress Fran Drescher arrives at the opening of 'Cabaret' at the Hollywood Pantages Theatre on July 20, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Amanda Edwards/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 07: Fran Drescher arrives to The Music Center's Summer Soiree Honoring Rita Moreno at The Music Center Plaza on July 7, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Gabriel Olsen/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 20: Fran Drescher arrives at Fran Drescher's 2016 Cabaret Cruise at Pier 40 on June 20, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 20: Fran Drescher and George Takei pose at the '2nd Annual Fran Drescher Cancer Schmancer Sunset Cabaret Cruise' on The SS Hornblower Infinity Crusie Ship on June 20, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 16: Fran Drescher visits AOL Build to discuss her life and career as well as the important work of her organization Cancer Schmancer and their upcoming 2nd Annual Cabaret Cruise in NYC on June 20th at AOL Studios In New York on June 16, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images)