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Cancer Genetics

The chance to develop cancer depends on many factors including age, lifestyle and personal and family history. Although most cancer is not hereditary, about 5 to 10 percent of many types of cancers are hereditary. Cancer genetics consultation helps individuals find answers to questions such as:
  • Could my cancer diagnosis and/or my cancer family history be part of a hereditary cancer condition?
  • Are other members of my family at increased risk for cancer?
  • Is genetic testing an option for me?
  • Since I have cancer, how can genetic testing influence my medical management?
  • What is my risk for developing cancer based on my family history?
  • What can I do to reduce my cancer risk?
Our goal is to identify individuals and families at increased risk for cancer to assist in medical management and promote awareness, risk assessment, early detection, and cancer prevention.  Genetic counselors also ensure that the proper hereditary cancer testing is performed.


The Genetics Team

At HSHS St. Vincent Hospital, you will find that we offer a unique team approach to diagnostic genetic testing, consultation, counseling and risk management. We have an experienced team of board certified genetic counselors and a clinical genetics physician to discuss your case. Our team is available to talk with you and your family members to address questions and concerns in a compassionate manner.


What does cancer genetics consultation involve?

A visit to the HSHS St. Vincent Hospital Cancer Center's Medical Genetics Clinic usually includes time with a genetic counselor that has expertise in inherited cancer syndromes. We educate our patients about cancer risks and the implications for them and their family members.
  • An appointment is scheduled for a discussion of medical and family history.
  • A personal hereditary cancer risk assessment is provided.
  • Testing options for you and your family are discussed.
  • Follow-up includes discussion and interpretation of test results.
  • Medical management recommendations are made when a hereditary cancer condition is diagnosed.

Who benefits from cancer genetics consultation?

Patients and families who have:
  • Cancer diagnosed at a younger age than usual, even without a family history of cancer.
  • Cancer diagnosed in one or more blood relatives, especially at young ages.
  • A relative with a known abnormality in a cancer gene.
  • A rare cancer or tumor.
  • Questions about whether their own history or family history is part of a hereditary cancer condition.
  • Interest in a hereditary cancer risk assessment.
HSHS St. Vincent Hospital Cancer Centers include a team of expert health professionals, including medical oncologists, gastroenterologists, geneticists, gynecologists, psychologists, surgeons, nurses, and genetic counselors.  Our expert team provides cancer risk assessment, diagnosis and comprehensive recommendations for managing cancer risk.

To make an appointment or get more information call (920) 433-8559.
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