Is Breast Cancer Genetics Counseling Right for You?

Mar 22 • 2016

Did you know that 10 percent of people who develop cancer do so because of a risk factor they inherited? For women with breast cancer that runs in their family, our Breast Risk Management Center can provide genetic counseling. We offer a variety of genetic counseling, testing, and follow-up services for people who are worried about their inherited risk, as well as their family members.

Our genetics counselors are particularly experienced. They have master’s degrees in human and medical genetics and have been board-certified by the American Board of Genetic Counseling. They partner with physicians, researchers, and other genetics counselors throughout the United States to continue developing their knowledge so they can provide patients with the best possible information about detection, prevention, and treatment of hereditary breast cancer.

It can be difficult to know whether cancer in your family is hereditary. Some characteristics that may put you at a higher risk include:

  • Multiple family members with the same kind of cancer
  • You or another family member have had breast cancer before the age of 50
  • You or another family member have had breast and ovarian cancer
  • You or a family member have had breast cancer in both breasts or ovarian cancer in both ovaries
  • Cancer seems to run in the family in general

Genetics counseling allows you to learn more about your risks and the options that are available for testing, surveillance, and breast cancer detection. Using the information you provide about your family history, a chart will be created to document the information and provide you with a personalized risk estimate. Based on this risk, personalized recommendations can be made for any steps you may want to take next.

Genetics counseling can be used for all types of hereditary cancer, not just breast cancer. We can provide state-of-the-art information on hereditary cancer through our DNA testing, as well as access to research studies and treatment of these kinds of cancers. If you are concerned about your family history, speak with your doctor to see if genetics counseling is the right option for you.