Are You at Risk for Cancer?

Oct 13, 2015Health Focus, Health Matters for Women

Approximately five to 10 percent of all cancers are hereditary. And, patients with a hereditary cancer syndrome are at a significant risk for developing an initial cancer and a second primary cancer. Hereditary cancer is more prevalent than might be expected, but there is hope. Today, 25 genes exist for hereditary cancer risk and genetic testing can help you determine if you are at increased risk for developing certain types of cancer.

Some of the more common hereditary cancer syndromes that can now be detected by testing before they even start include: breast, ovarian, colorectal, endometrial, gastric, melanoma, prostate, and pancreatic cancers. Hereditary cancer screenings can potentially lead to improved treatment options, more appropriate plans for risk management, and, ultimately, better outcomes.

Our healthcare providers use genetic testing to:

  • Screen for and diagnose a disease.
  • Identify carriers for a genetic disease.
  • Determine if a patient has an inherited predisposition to a disease.
  • Educate patients and take action to potentially reduce their risk of disease, diagnose it earlier or provide more informed and personalized treatment.

In addition, most insurance companies cover genetic testing at 100 percent.

Take Our Hereditary Cancer Quiz

Understanding your hereditary risk for cancer is the first step in preventing cancer or facilitating an early diagnosis. We have developed a 30-second quiz that can help our healthcare providers determine if you might benefit from hereditary cancer testing. Our Hereditary Cancer Quiz will identify red flags in your personal or family history that might suggest genetic risk factors for cancer.

Please scroll to the bottom to take the 30-second quiz.

After taking the Hereditary Cancer Quiz, you will be notified if you are or are not at risk for the following hereditary cancers:*

  • Breast Cancer
  • Colon Cancer
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Pancreatic Cancer
  • Uterine Cancer

If you are considered at risk, you will want to speak with your physician or a healthcare provider at Bingham Memorial Hospital to undergo a full evaluation to see if hereditary cancer testing or a full cancer screening would be beneficial.

Currently, Dr. Heather Pugmire and Dr. Heidi S. Weaver with the Bingham Memorial Women’s Center work with patients on genetic testing. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call (208) 782-3900 for additional information.

*The questions in the Hereditary Cancer Quiz are based on the clinical guidelines used to determine whether individuals should be tested for one of the syndromes associated with the cancers listed above. This is not a test, but rather a questionnaire to help determine whether or not an individual is at risk so that they can be prepared to talk to their healthcare professional about further evaluation of their personal and family history of cancer.