Genetic Counseling and Testing
Through genetic counseling, patients can benefit from strategies for early detection, cancer prevention opportunities and treatment options.
Inspira’s Approach to Genetic Counseling and Testing
Genetic tests scan a patient’s DNA for the presence of genetic mutations known to be linked to conditions like cancer. Though not all cancer-causing mutations have been discovered, this can be an effective way to gauge risk or choose treatment options if you’ve already been diagnosed with cancer.
Genetic counseling can help people consider the risks, benefits and limitations of genetic testing in the context of their particular situation. In some cases, a genetic counselor and physician may determine that testing is not needed.
Genetic counseling also helps patients understand test results. Genetic counselors work with you and your physician to review your results and choose the prevention, surveillance or treatment strategies that best fit your needs.
For example, if you have an elevated risk for hereditary cancer, the Inspira High Risk Cancer Program [linked] will develop a personalized plan for screening and prevention.
Candidates for Genetic Testing and Counseling
At Inspira, we help patients understand reasons to consider having a cancer risk assessment or cancer genetic counseling. Factors to consider genetic counseling include:
- Early age at cancer diagnosis (usually under age 50 but may vary)
- Any woman diagnosed with breast cancer at age 45 or younger regardless of family history
- Any woman diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) at age 60 or younger
- A combination of certain cancers in you or your family. For example, breast and ovarian cancer; colorectal and uterine cancer; sarcoma, brain tumor and breast cancer
- More than one type of cancer diagnosed in you or a family member
- Any Ashkenazi Jewish woman with breast or ovarian cancer regardless of age of diagnosis
- Any man with breast cancer, or close relative of a man with breast cancer
Consultations prior to genetic testing are covered by most health insurers. Health insurance companies may cover most, if not all, of the cost of genetic testing on a case-by-case basis. The issue of health insurance coverage for the cost of genetic testing will be addressed during the consultation appointment.