Hereditary Cancer Risk Assessment
At Insight Medical Genetics, our Hereditary Cancer Risk Assessment provides patients with a complete understanding of their options when it comes to determining their potential risk of hereditary cancer.
Most cancer development can be attributed to factors like aging, lifestyle, certain infections and exposure to chemicals and radiation. However, some families and ethnic groups have a higher risk than average because of inherited factors. The genetic counselors at Insight have the experience and knowledge to help you determine if genetics could be increasing your cancer risk.
What is a Hereditary Cancer Risk Assessment?
A hereditary cancer risk assessment determines your individual risk of developing certain types of cancers based on your personal, family and social history. Your genetic counselor will ask you a series of questions during your consultation. They will then assess all the information provided and apply their expertise and knowledge to determine your potential risk. If appropriate, you may also undergo genetic testing using blood tests.
Who Benefits from Cancer Risk Assessment?
Any individual can benefit from meeting with a genetic counselor to understand their personal risk for hereditary cancer as well as screening and management options.
Individuals with any of the following personal or family history attributes may be at higher risk and should especially consider risk assessment:
- Cancer at an unusually early age (premenopausal breast cancer, colon cancer before age 50 and other types)
- Uncommon types of cancer (male breast cancer, ovarian cancer)
- Multiple primary cancers in the same individual (a woman with breast cancer in both breasts, or both colon and uterine cancer)
- Several family members with the same type of cancer, especially if they are in multiple generations (a grandmother, mother and daughter with breast cancer)
- At-risk ethnic background (e.g., Jewish ancestry)
If you are unsure whether your personal or family history meets these or other criteria, call a genetic counselor at Insight today.
How Does a Hereditary Cancer Risk Assessment Work?
- Your referring provider (usually your OBGYN, midwife or primary care physician) will begin the process by initiating a referral for counseling at Insight.
- Within 48 hours, you will be scheduled to come into our office to meet with a genetic counselor who will ask you a series of detailed questions on your family, personal and social history in order to begin putting together your risk assessment. At this time, the counselor will review your potential cancer risk with you based on the information you’ve provided.
- Based on where you lie on the cancer risk spectrum, as well as your personal desires, you may choose to undergo genetic testing .
How Does Genetic Testing Work?
If you and your genetic counselor have decided that you are a good candidate for genetic testing based on the outcome of your risk assessment, you may choose to proceed with genetic testing in order to further clarify your cancer risk.
- You will first have your blood drawn for testing.
- Then, you will meet with one of our medical directors, who will review any questions you may have and explain how the results of your blood tests may change recommendations for cancer screening in the future.
- When your blood tests results come back, you can choose to either come into our office to review your results in-person with your genetic counselor, or review your results over the phone. At this time, you will have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have about what the results of the blood test mean for you, your future healthcare and the health of your family.
- Your genetic counselor will provide detailed recommendations for future cancer screening (e.g., mammograms, colonoscopies) and frequencies to you and your referring provider, as well as to family members, if requested.
Why Choose Insight Medical Genetics?
At Insight, it’s our mission to guide our patients through the highest quality genetic services in a personalized private practice environment.
Guidance from an experienced team with the latest tools
The cancer risk assessment and genetic counseling team at Insight is very experienced in both assessing risk factors and guiding patients through related decisions. We are early adopters of new tests and technologies in the field of genetics, enabling us to offer you the most current and comprehensive cancer risk assessment available today.
Initial consultation within two days
At Insight, we offer new patients their initial consultation within 48 business hours. Rather than waiting three to six months for an appointment, as is often the case at other institutions, you will be able to speak with your genetic counselor within two days of your referring provider sending in your referral.
Help with insurance paperwork
We handle insurance and billing ourselves, relieving you of that burden so you can focus on your health. Before you come in for your appointment, we will work with your insurance carrier to determine which tests they will cover, and whether the service will require a pre-certification or a letter of medical necessity. We provide all relevant information that you and your insurance carrier require, and work hard to make sure that financial constraints do not prevent you from obtaining the risk assessment that you need.
Working with an experienced genetic counselor at Insight can help you better understand your own risk for developing cancer, as well as the measures you can take to help decrease these chances.