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Wednesday 21 August 2019
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Can Genetic Testing Help You Prevent Cancer?

Can Genetic Testing Help You Prevent Cancer?

If cancer runs in your family, you may want to learn more about genetic tests. Certain cancers are considered hereditary. Therefore, genetic assessments can help you reduce your cancer risk by following preventative practices.

Hereditary Cancers

Some of the cancers that can be inherited include the following:

  • Ovarian cancer
  • Womb cancer
  • Thyroid cancer
  • Retinoblastoma (eye cancer)
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Melanoma (skin cancer)
  • Breast cancer
  • Bowel cancer

Booking a Genetic Test

If you have an inherited cancer gene, you need to schedule Singapore genetic testing. Doing so will help you focus on prevention of the cancer and keep you healthier. By booking an appointment online, you can set up a convenient testing time at a preferred location and date.

Testing for Cancer

Once you have finally booked an appointment, you will need to prepare for your visit. Maybe you would like to test for a suspected cancer. If so, you should bring a referral letter to your first visit. Besides genetic assessments, the same cancer centre can also arrange tests for diagnosing the illness.

Types of Tests

When tests are conducted, they include PET and CT scans, MRIs, biopsies, and blood tests. All these tests are run so a cancer can be identified correctly. Tests enable the doctor to determine the state as well. If you fast before your visit, the tests can be taken the same day. Most lab tests take about four hours to complete whilst a PET can may take as long as 24 hours. Therefore, making a complete diagnosis may take as long as one to three days overall.

Getting a Second Opinion

If you are visiting a cancer centre for a second opinion, you need to bring a detailed medical report including prior prescribed medicines and treatments. You should also include a histology report for the doctor’s review. It is always a good idea to bring a friend or family member with you whether you have booked a genetic screening or are being assessed for cancer.

Breast Cancer Risks

When you refer to a cancer centre for these kinds of tests, you can also avail yourself of treatment services if required. That is why it always helps to know the causes and risks of certain cancers, whether or not they are hereditary.

For example, the risk of getting breast cancer increases as people age. Most women diagnosed with breast cancer have passed their 40th birthdays. Men can also get breast cancer. However, fewer than one percent of breast cancers develop in men.

Genetic Factors

About 10% of the breast cancers diagnosed related to genetic factors such as BRCA1 and BRCA2 markers or genes. These genes run in about half the families that also reveal a history of ovarian cancer. Breast cancer risk increases when older women give birth or when women have a longer fertile period.

A common symptom of breast cancer is a notable breast lump. Other symptoms may include nipple discharge, enlarged lymph glands, and swelling of the breast. Nipples that are indrawn or bleeding indicate that breast cancer may be the cause.