Are you looking for more information on genetic breast cancer risks? If so, you have come to the right place. There are many different risk factors for developing breast cancer, one of the largest being family genetics. According to research, an individual’s chance of developing breast cancer increases with their number of affected relatives.
To learn more about genetics and breast cancer, continue reading this article. Throughout the article we will discuss the two genes that effect the risk of breast cancer, as well as what types of tests are used to detect these genes.
According to research, a woman (or man) is at increased risk of developing breast cancer if she (or he) inherits a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation from a family member. What are BRCA1 and BRCA2? BRCA1 and BRCA2 are types of genes that are sometimes referred to as tumor suppressors. If these genes are normal, they will help the body to prevent uncontrolled cell growth.
If, however, these genes are mutated, uncontrolled cell growth can occur, eventually leading to breast cancer. According to research, women who have inherited a harmful mutation in their BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes is five times more likely than the average woman (without mutations) to develop breast cancer.
While most hereditary breast cancers can be attributed to BRCA1 and BRCA2, these are not the only inherited genes that can lead to the development of breast cancer. Mutations of other genes such as TP53, MSH2, PTEN, and ATM, are also associated with hereditary cancer.
If breast cancer is in your family history, you may want to consider performing a genetic test to determine if there are any mutations within your BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes. What is involved in these tests? To have a genetic test performed, you will need to provide your health care provider with a blood sample. The blood will be drawn in a laboratory and will then be sent off for testing. Results generally take a few weeks to get back.
If your test results come back positive, this indicates that you have inherited a mutation within your BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes. This does not mean that you will definitely develop breast cancer, it simply means that you are at an increased risk of developing it. Similarly, negative results do not imply that you will not develop breast cancer, but they do suggest that you are less susceptible to developing it.
If you have a history of breast cancer within your family, be sure to speak to your family doctor. Your doctor may suggest that the person who had breast cancer be tested for genetic mutations before they request to do testing on you. Even if there is not a history of breast cancer within your family, it is important to get regular breast exams.
Keeping up with changes in your body will allow you to catch breast cancer in its beginning stages! Remember, when it comes to your body, it is better to be safe than sorry!