Breast Cancer And Genetics


75% of women who get breast cancer have no identifiable factors that predispose them to the disease. Only 5 – 10 % of breast cancer is thought to be inherited, but if you are concerned about risks related to a genetic mutation, you may want to be referred to a genetic counselor before taking any action. It is generally recommended that if a close relative who has had breast cancer is able to have a genetic (blood) test, then they should be tested. If they test negative, your risk may be lower than you thought – similar to that in the general population and you may not need any further work up. This depends on your family history on both your mother and father’s sides.

Written by: Dr. Deborah Axelrod, NYU Langone. Last updated: September 3, 2017 by Melissa Sakow.

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