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Cancer Risk Counseling

CHI Memorial Rees Skillern Cancer Institute offers comprehensive genetic evaluation and counseling to help people better understand their risk of developing cancer. Approximately 5%-10% of cancer is due to an inherited genetic cause. Genetic testing for cancer predisposition genes can be performed if your personal history and/or family history suggest an inherited risk. Hereditary cancer is caused by an abnormal gene change (mutation) that can be passed down in a family. Those who have an abnormal gene mutation may have a higher than average chance of developing certain types of cancer. 

Our specially trained staff will provide you with accurate information about your cancer risk and help determine if genetic testing for hereditary cancer might be appropriate for you. If genetic testing is performed, we will explain what these results mean for you and your family members. This information may then be used to guide your care including cancer treatment (if applicable), screening, and prevention options. 

Who is appropriate for genetic counseling?

Genetic counseling is recommended for those who have a personal and/or family history of any of the following:

  • Cancer at a younger than average age (typically before age 50)
  • Multiple relatives on the same side of the family with the same or related types of cancers or tumors
  • Two or more different types of cancer or tumors in a single person
  • Rare cancers or tumors, such as male breast cancer
  • Ten or more precancerous colon polyps
  • A known genetic mutation that increases the risk for cancer

Benefits of genetic counseling

A genetic counselor can use your medical and family history to determine your risk for hereditary cancer and if genetic testing is right for you. This information could:

  • Help you better understand your risk for cancer
  • Help you and your doctors decide the best way to screen for cancer or lower your risk
  • Help your family members learn about their risk and if they should also see a genetic counselor

Confidential service

CHI Memorial’s cancer risk counseling team provides a complete, personalized cancer risk evaluation in a comfortable, confidential setting. At your appointment, we will address concerns related to genetic discrimination and how your genetic information could be held against you. There are laws that provide certain protections against such discrimination. If you choose to undergo genetic testing, we will discuss your expected cost before ordering any testing. 

Call (423) 495-4363 for more information.