Probably the most worrisome aspect of cancer is the stealthy way in which it strikes, leaving a normal life in absolute tatters. Around 5-10 percent of all cancers are due to inherited genetic mutations. This also includes breast cancer. Surprised? Certain cancer causing markers have been identified in genes and the presence of such markers in your genes could mean that you’d have a high risk rate for being afflicted with cancer. In such a scenario, would just being careful about health in general help? Genetic health counselling and testing are means by which you can be better prepared for any kind of eventuality regarding cancer.
Let’s get a few misconceptions out of the way.
Is genetic testing for everyone?
Yes, anyone can undergo genetic counselling and testing. It can reveal a lot of useful information about your genetic makeup that can impact your health, and well being. This would also include your risk for certain diseases.
Is genetic testing necessary for everyone?
No. If you have concerns regarding your health and/or have seen any family member suffer from a critical ailment like cancer, you can first take up a counselling session to help understand the scope of the test and what can be gained from the test.
Do you need to visit a lab for this?
Not at all. Post the counselling session, if you choose to take up the test, a test kit will be sent to your address. You can follow the instructions to provide a sample of your saliva and send the kit back. After the analysis is done, you will be mailed the test results and have a telephonic or digital conversation to understand the test results. You don’t have to go anywhere.
Is the test costly?
It is a one-time test that tells you of any inherited health risks that you might ever encounter. Considering that it is once in a lifetime, the cost is almost miniscule compared to the setbacks that you could have had if the disease were to strike you suddenly..
Now that those questions are out of the way, let’s take a look at why genetic counselling and testing are helpful for cancer. Hereditary factors, lifestyle, environment, diet, medication and many other factors can be the trigger for cancer even in healthy individuals. If your genes contain one of the many identified mutations that are associated with the risk of cancer, you are in a probable risk group.
Considering breast cancer, hormones, medications are said to be primary triggers for malignant tumours. More than 50 hereditary cancer syndromes have been identified till now and if your tests reveal any of these variants, you can be better prepared for life ahead. You might never encounter cancer however, but staying a step ahead is always better than constantly having to bear the brunt of the physical and physiological trauma of cancer.
Gone are the days when checking for lumps around the breast was the only way to be proactive about breast cancer. Be better armed against cancer by changing your lifestyle, diet and habits, if your genes indicate a problematic variation of a gene. To know more about truGeny’s telegenetic services, please visit www.trugeny.com or book an appointment through this https://trugeny.com/product-page-index.