CommunityHealth Fix


Genetic Testing for Cancer

Posted at 4:59 PM, Apr 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-21 19:05:59-04

In some women, abnormalities in two genes—BRCA1 and BRCA2—have been linked to the increased risk of breast and ovarian cancers. A gene can develop a mutation that changes the way the cells function and grow. Women with inherited mutations, from either parent, in one of the BRCA genes have up to an 85% chance of developing breast or ovarian cancers in their lifetimes. Though, not all women who carry these genes will develop cancers.

After speaking with your health care provider and determining if you are an appropriate candidate for genetic testing, your family medical history will be analyzed for any inherited diseases. The BRCA genetic test is a blood test that can determine if you have the gene.

  • How is BRCA genetic testing performed?
  • Who should consider genetic testing?
  • As women, how important is it to check family medical history?
  • What are the options if a positive genetic test comes back?