The AGCT GENOMICS Breast Cancer Panel analyzes genes that are associated with hereditary breast cancer. This panel includes genes associated with hereditary breast cancer. Genetic testing of these genes may confirm a diagnosis and help guide treatment and management decisions. Identification of a disease-causing variant would also guide testing and diagnosis of at-risk relatives.
Breast cancer is among the common cancers affecting mostly women around the world and, despite new treatments and prevention steps, it still has a high mortality rate. The majority of cases are not hereditary, but in up to 10% of affected individuals there is an underlying genetic alteration. Women with certain risk factors are more likely than others to develop breast cancer. A risk factor is something that may increase the chance of getting a disease. Some risk factors (such as drinking alcohol) can be avoided. But most risk factors (such as having a family history of breast cancer) can’t be avoided. There are a number of genes that are linked to breast cancer; if a person carries an alteration in one of them their risk of developing the disease is high.
Genetic testing allows you to define this risk and if necessary make important decisions for your health. If you have already been diagnosed with breast cancer, identifying a genetic involvement can help to monitor and guide targeted treatment.
A simple blood test can identify whether you have a disease-causing alteration in one of the known breast cancer genes. Or you can have complete hereditary cancer screening, which tests for 80+ genes associated with cancer. Highly trained medical scientists and geneticists analyze the DNA and assess each and every alteration detected.
If the test shows positive remarks in your breast cancer test result, this does not necessarily mean that you have cancer, or will develop it.
Depending on the gene and the alteration, you may have an increased likelihood of developing cancer of up to 80% over your lifetime, but it might also depend on the individual circumstances. Knowing your individual risk will allow you to decide on possible regular cancer screening, chemoprevention or surgery to address the risk. All options should be carefully discussed with your doctor to decide what is best for you.
For those who have already been diagnosed of breast cancer, the identification of a genetic alteration can lead to treatments specific to your individual cancer.
The information obtained from genetic testing can have a profound impact on your life. Prior to any genetic testing, we strongly recommend that you seek genetic counseling to understand more about which of the following options might be beneficial for you and your family members. Genetic counseling is also recommended to help you understand your genetic test results and their implications for other family members.
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