Breast cancer genetic counseling helping women in England

The United Press International reported yesterday: More women are seeking out genetic services to learn about family breast-cancer risk, and a Welch review found many have less stress and worry. "Many people have spent years worrying about cancer in their family," said review co-author Rachel Iredale of the Institute of Medical Genetics at Cardiff University.

A genetic risk assessment enables people to reach a better understanding of hereditary breast cancer, their own personal risk, and means access to additional services, such as extra mammography screening or genetic testing, is often easier. Most people are satisfied with the service they receive.

The press release concludes by citing the source of the information: three studies of 1,251 women who underwent genetic risk assessment for hereditary breast cancer. All of the studies showed that genetic counseling improved patients' psychological well-being and decreased their levels of anxiety and worry about developing cancer, according to the review in The Cochrane Library.

I've been reading about this study in several other sources and will track it down to see what else the study itself can add. More in another blog entry.

Marie Godfrey, PhD

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