Friday, October 19, 2012

Me and The BRCA Gene

I had genetic counseling earlier this month and today I found out something that I had suspected given the high incident of breast and ovarian cancer in my family,
and that is that I am positive for the brca 1 gene mutation.

Now some of you may wonder why I bothered with this, seeing that I already have cancer.
Well four reasons-my four children and consequently their children.

There is a 1 in 2 chance that I passed this gene mutation onto them and if any of them choose to seek testing and are found to be positive, then that is concrete information that becomes part of their medical record and they can work with their doctors to be aggressively proactive with early screenings and testing that is not commonly offered to young adults to identify certain cancers.

It is my greatest prayer that I did not pass on this terrible legacy, but I will not leave my family in the dark. However, what they choose to do with this information I will respect.
I truly believe that forewarned is forearmed.


For more info on hereditary breast and ovarian cancer please visit

And for my brothers and sisters-if you haven't been tested (and that is entirely your choice)
I respect that also. If you want to be tested, email me and I can give you the sequence of our exact mutation (evidently there are different ones) and that narrows it down and makes the cost of the test (which your insurance should cover, given our history)considerably less.
Love you all!

An interesting tidbit-Our particular brca 1 mutation is believed to have originated in Western Europe, and yes everyone in the world who carries our particular mutation (even if it is only that one gene) is a relative.
Personally, I have always secretly believed that my brothers were a bunch of Vikings! Although, according to my older sister Judy, our Great-Grandfather Jackson Greenway once stated when asked, that "We all come from a long line of horse thieves, moonshiners and preachers" :D

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