Find out if you have BRCA 1 or 2 mutations with BRCA genetic testing
Have you heard of BRCA genetic testing? This simple test can tell you whether you have mutations in your BRCA 1 or 2 genes. These mutations increase your risk of developing breast, ovarian and other types of cancer. The caring doctors at Athens ObGyn will counsel you about the test’s benefits and whether you should consider having it.
Questions to consider before having BRCA genetic testing
This test determines whether your BRCA 1 or 2 genes are working properly. These genes suppress malignant, or cancerous, tumors unless they mutate. If there are genetic changes, you have an increased risk of developing certain cancers. When you discuss testing with the doctors at Athens ObGyn, they will ask you a series of questions about yourself and your family. They are looking for the following risk factors.
- A personal history of breast, fallopian tube, ovarian or peritoneal cancer
- Breast cancer in two or more first-degree relatives (mother or sister) before age 50
- A male family member with breast cancer
- A female family member who has had both breast and ovarian cancer
- Two first-degree relatives with ovarian cancer
- Being Eastern European (Ashkenazi) Jewish
If you answer yes to any of these questions, your ObGyn will talk to you about having BRCA genetic testing.
What you should know about this type of testing
After discussing your risk factors and testing with your doctor, you will provide a blood or saliva sample. Once you receive your test results, your doctor will talk to you about the test’s conclusion. If you test positive for BRCA 1 or 2 gene mutations, it does not mean that you have cancer or will ever get cancer. It merely means that you have an increased risk of developing certain cancers during your lifetime. However, preventive options are available to help avoid cancer, including increased screening and even preventive surgery.
If you would like to discuss BRCA genetic testing with a compassionate, knowledgeable doctor, contact us to make an appointment.