University Cancer Centers is taking aggressive steps toward protecting you and your loved ones from a cancer diagnosis by offering Genetic Testing. It’s just one of the ways we are waging war on the fight against cancer.
What exactly is genetic testing?
It is predictive testing and is one of the best ways to predict the likelihood of those tested to tell whether or not they will develop cancer in his or her lifetime.
Genetic Testing is a type of medical test that can identify changes in chromosomes, genes or proteins. The test can confirm positively or negatively a patient’s genetic condition and assists in determining if someone can develop or pass along a genetic disorder to their children. Should someone based on their genetic test be pre-disposed to certain types of cancers the necessary preventative measures can be taken to ensure that doctors act swiftly to treat cancer in its earliest stages. Not everyone that has a cancer-related gene will develop cancer.
While they are developing many genetic tests, one that University Cancer Centers offers is called the PrevenTest. It is the first Comprehensive Cancer Risk Assessment test that determines your risk of developing up to 8 types of cancer. Strategy is the first step in winning the fight on cancer, and with this genetic information, along with your family history and other medical information you can create a plan to reduce your risk of developing cancer in your lifetime.
Things to Remember About Genetic Testing
Should you choose to undergo genetic testing, there are a few things to remember. While genetic testing can help predict the likelihood of developing diseases, it is a personal decision to undergo testing. It is recommended that individuals who undergo genetic testing should also receive genetic counseling before and after the test.
Genetic counseling helps you to gain a better understanding of family history and medical records. For those individuals who are becoming first time parents’ genetic counseling can help parents analyze and figure out their next steps if they have a child that may be predisposed to cancer.
One of the main factors to consider is family history. If you have 3 or more relatives on the same side of the family with the same or related forms of cancer you may be at risk for developing hereditary cancer. Families with members who have experienced the early onset of cancer or cancer at multiple sites should be cautious and as a preventative measure get tested.
The PrevenTest screens for the following cancers:
- Breast Cancer
- Ovarian Cancer
- Colorectal Cancer
- Endometrial Cancer
- Pancreatic Cancer
- Prostate Cancer
- Gastric Cancer
- Skin Cancer
Genetic testing is not painful and only takes a few moments. Your blood is collected and analyzed, and the great thing about it is that most insurance companies do cover genetic testing, especially if there is a family history associated with cancer.
University Cancer Centers will be offering genetic testing at the Huntsville and Brenham offices. Get an online appointment with a cancer specialist for a test today and find out how your genes will affect your future.