We believe that the more you know about your risk factors for cancer, the better your chances for staying healthy. Genetic counseling can help you learn more about your inherited risk factors for cancer.
What is Genetic Counseling?
Genetic counseling helps you understand your chances of developing cancer based on your family history.
Some cancers tend to run in families. In fact, there are more than 50 genes known to cause an inherited predisposition to cancer (called hereditary cancer syndromes). These syndromes can cause an increased risk to develop a variety of cancer types including breast cancer, ovarian cancer or colorectal cancer.
Our genetic counselors can evaluate your risk of getting cancer after reviewing your family's medical history. If several close relatives were diagnosed with the same type of cancer, you may be at higher risk.
After looking at your medical history, we sometimes recommend genetic testing. The results can give you a clearer picture of your cancer risks, and what preventive measures you can take.
Why Choose Luminis Health for Genetic Counseling?
Luminis Health is at the forefront of genetic counseling and testing. We believe that knowing your family history is a vital part of your journey from cancer prevention to survivorship.
Our genetic counselors:
We have the training to recognize factors in your history that might put you at greater risk for cancer. We're also experts at interpreting the results of genetic testing.
We won't burden you with unnecessary tests and procedures. Our genetic counselors discuss the pros and cons of genetic testing, including how knowing the test results might affect your emotions and mental health.
We explain your options in simple, easy-to-understand language, delivered with compassion and care. We also talk to you about how to share information with other family members.
From prevention to survivorship, our cancer care team pulls in experts from many disciplines. Doctors, nurse navigators and social workers all contribute to your cancer education and care.
Can I Benefit From Genetic Counseling?
Genetic counseling isn't right for everyone. But in many cases — for instance, if there are multiple cases of the same type of cancer in your family — it's a good idea.
You're probably a candidate for genetic counseling and testing if you or a close family member:
- Has a known genetic mutation that raises the risk of developing cancer.
- Developed more than one type of cancer.
- Developed cancer on both sides of a pair of organs, such as breasts, eyes or kidneys.
- Had a rare type of cancer.
- Had more than one relative with the same type of cancer, especially in multiple generations.
What to Expect at a Genetic Counseling Appointment
For most people, a genetic counseling session is a new experience. You may feel apprehensive or worried. You should expect to:
- Complete a previsit questionnaire about your family's medical history. Allow yourself plenty of time to gather the information and return the questionnaire at least two days before your appointment.
- Allow 90 minutes for the appointment. You should plan to arrive 15 minutes early.
- Meet with a genetic counselor who will go over your family history, assess your risk of developing cancer, and suggest management options.
- Discuss genetic testing with your counselor and whether it's appropriate based on your history.
- Have a choice about genetic testing. Some people choose to have genetic testing done, and some do not.