Posts in "brca1-mutation/"

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New breast cancer gene identified

Written by Community Health Network on 8/14/2014 10:00:00 AM

New breast cancer gene identified A recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine identified a new gene mutation, called PALB2, that could lead to breast cancer. Individuals with the gene had a 30 percent chance of developing breast cancer by age 70. PALB2 is now the third gene mutation to be linked to breast cancer. The first two, BRCA1 and BRCA2, were identified in the 90s.

Having a gene mutation does not mean that you will develop breast cancer, but it does increase your cancer risk. Breast surgeons and oncologists work with genetic counselors to determine the level of risk and what can be done to minimize that risk. continue reading ...


Birth control can decrease ovarian cancer risk

Written by Community Health Network on 6/16/2014 12:00:00 PM

Ovarian cancer risk decreases in women with the BRCA gene mutations if they have breast-fed, taken birth control pills or had their fallopian tubes tied.

A new review study by University of Pennsylvania researchers looked at 44 different medical studies. Women with the BRCA1 gene mutation that breast fed or had a tubal ligation had a lower risk for ovarian cancer. Those women who use birth control pills and have BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutations had lower rates of ovarian cancer. continue reading ...


Women with BRCA mutations should remove ovaries

Written by Community Health Network on 2/27/2014 7:00:00 PM

A recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology studied nearly 5,800 women with specific genetic mutations called BRCA1 and BRCA2.

Researchers found that women with BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations who proactively had their ovaries removed reduced their risk of ovarian, fallopian tube, or peritoneal cancer by 80 percent, and their overall risk of death by 77 percent.

BRCA stands for breast cancer susceptibility genes, a class of genes that are tumor suppressors. Mutations of the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes have been linked to hereditary breast and ovarian cancer.

According to the study, women with BRCA1 mutations should have preventive ovarian surgery (known as prophylactic oophorectomy) by age 35, because waiting past that age is shown to increase the risk of ovarian cancer. continue reading ...


Cancer answers: What is genetic testing?

Written by Community Health Network on 2/25/2014 9:00:00 AM

Simply put, genetic testing is the process of using medical tests to look for changes (mutations) in a person’s genes or chromosomes.

The type of testing most often used to check for cancer risk is called predictive gene testing. It’s used to look for gene mutations that might put a person at risk of getting cancer. It’s usually done in a patient who has a history of cancer in their family and a chance of inheriting the disease. The test helps to determine if a person has a certain gene mutation known to increase the risk for a certain cancer or confirm a suspected gene mutation in a person or family member.

An example is testing for changes in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes (known breast cancer genes) in a woman whose mother and sister had breast cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, only about five to ten percent of all cancers are thought to be related to an inherited gene change that strongly affects a person’s risk for a certain type of cancer.

At Community Health Network, we frequently use genetic testing and have genetic counselors to shepherd patients through the process. Our certified genetic counselor, Rebekah Krukenberg, MS, CGC, LGC, helps breast cancer patients understand and adapt to the medical, psychological and familial implications of genetic contributions to disease.

Questions about genetic counseling?
Call the Community Health Network genetic counseling hotline at 317-621-8988.


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