Colon Cancer Genetic Screening, can save your life

Submitted by Atlantic Gastroenterolgy on Wed, 04/15/2015 - 13:20

Atlantic Gastroenterology now offers genetic screening and counseling for colon cancer.  This screening tool is important because if you have Lynch syndrome you are at increased risk for developing cancers such as colon cancer. 

What is Lynch Syndrome?

Lynch Syndrome is an inherited condition that causes increased risk for early onset colon cancer.  It also increases the risk for other cancers including: endometrial cancer, stomach cancer, and ovarian cancer.

Who needs to be tested?

If you have a family history of colon, endometrium or ovarian cancer you should contact our office to schedule an appointment for genetic counseling.  At your first visit, you will complete a questionnaire about your family history.  This will be reviewed by a colon cancer professional and recommendations will be made about genetic testing. 

What do you do with the results?

If you have genetic testing performed and you have a positive result, it could mean that you are at increased risk for developing certain cancers including colon cancer.  This information is useful to your doctor so that they can perform screenings such as colonoscopies more frequently than the patient who does not have the genetic risk factors for certain cancers. 

If I have a positive test result, do I need to encourage other family members to be tested?

Absolutely, it is very important to share your results with your family members and encourage them to be screened as well.  If you test positive, your parents, your children, and your siblings have a 50% chance of having a positive test as well.

Does insurance cover testing?

Most insurance does cover genetic testing for patients who are at risk.  Talk with our pre-certification specialist to see if your insurance covers this screening.

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