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Who should consider genetic testing for the BRCA breast cancer genes?

Shelly Weiss
Clinical Genetics
Individuals should consider a genetic test is if they have a personal or family history of cancer that has genetic risk factors (as described in the previous question). Your physician team as well as a genetic counselor can help you decide whether you should consider genetic testing for the BRCA genes.
Scott Weissman
Clinical Genetics

The United States Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) made recommendations in 2005 as to who should be referred for genetic counseling for an evaluation for the BRCA genes; the guidelines can be found here: http://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/uspstf05/brcagen/brcagenrs.htm

The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) also has developed great guidelines for who should consider BRCA genetic testing. If you link to this webpage, and scroll down to where it says “BRCA Testing”, you will find NCCN guidelines: http://www.aetna.com/cpb/medical/data/200_299/0227.html

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.