“This is a comprehensive 22 minute informative video about BRCA testing from Myriad Genetics Inc.”
What is Hereditary Breast Cancer?
Most breast cancers occur from a multitude of factors. However, about 7 - 10 percent of breast and ovarian cancer cases are hereditary (passed along genetically from one generation to the next by a defective BRCA gene mutation). Determining which of these families have the inherited gene mutation is important, as the cancer risks for these family members are much higher than the normal population. When detected, there is much more that we can do to monitor and to reduce the increased risk of developing a breast or ovarian cancer. We can also offer testing to other family members if there is a known BRCA mutation.
BRCA Mutation Increases Risk of Developing Cancer:
Courtesy of Myriad Genetics Inc.
What is my risk for the BRCA mutation?
The vast majority of hereditary breast and ovarian cancer is due to a mutation in either the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes. When appropriate, the options for BRCA genetic testing will be presented. We will personally guide you through the testing process, and interpret the test results for you and your family. We generally will offer testing for those we calculate to have a 5 – 10% or greater risk of harboring a defective BRCA gene.
Most of the “Red Flag” risk factors are listed under our Criteria for Our High Risk Evaluation
“Calculate your risk of having the BRCA mutation using the Myriad Calculator”
What does it mean if I have the BRCA mutation?
Women who have the BRCA gene mutation have up to an 80 percent lifetime risk of developing breast cancer, and a 20 to 40 percent lifetime risk of ovarian cancer. There is a 50% risk of passing this high risk gene to your children at the moment of conception. We now approach BRCA mutation carriers much differently than the normal risk population.
1. Enhanced Breast & Ovarian Screening and Surveillance
1. Consider Annual Breast MRI Screening in addition to mammograms
2. Monitoring by a Breast Specialist
3. Pelvic Ultrasound of the ovaries & GYN monitoring
2. Risk Reduction options include
2. Prophylactic Mastectomy & Reconstruction
3. Prophylactic removal of the ovaries
Risk Reduction Interventions in BRCA 1 & 2 Mutation Carriers without Cancer
What is involved with BRCA Testing?
This sophisticated test involves examining a person's DNA for the BRCA mutation. A patient’s DNA can be easily obtained from the cells of the lining of their mouth. Samples of blood are seldom needed today. This mouthwash sample is sent to Myriad Genetics Incorporated for analysis. Insurance companies will generally cover this test if there is a significant risk of a patient of having the mutation. Coverage does vary from carrier to carrier.