Doc Talk: How Genetics Can Affect Breast Cancer

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According to Rhonda Schafer-Mclean a local OBGYN,  there is something that people often overlook when it comes to breast cancer and that’s your genetics. 
Based on who in your family has had cancer, certain people can have a gene that gives you up to an 85% chance of getting breast cancer.
If you talk to your physician, you can figure out what can be done early to help lower your chances of a diagnosis.
 
“With that awareness, your physician can offer to you some preventative strategies. One of those is as simple as use of hormonal contraceptives for 6-10 years. That could decrease your risk by up to 60%,” says Rhonda Schafer McLean, OBGYN at UND Center for Family Medicine.
 
Here are some things to look for in your family: 
1. Young cancers. This means anyone diagnosed with cancer that is younger than 45-50 years old. 
2. Two or more of the same kinds of cancers appearing in relatives. 
3. Rare cancers like ovarian cancer or male breast cancer.
 
If you find any of this is in your family history it could be beneficial to get some genetic screening done. 
 
 

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