I received $150 from AstraZeneca, and any opinions expressed by me are honest and reflect my actual experience. This is a sponsored post for SheSpeaks/AstraZeneca.
We all know how devastating cancer can be. If you ask a group of people if cancer has effected their lives in any way most will say they have either lost a loved one to cancer or have their own cancer experience to share.
Women are constantly reminded how important it is to get screened for breast cancer. We reach a certain age when mammograms become a part of life. We subject ourselves to dreaded pap smears to check for many things including cervical cancer. Sometimes a paps smear can detect ovarian cancer, but it’s not a definitive early detection tool.
Do You Know About BRCA?
We all know early detection can be critical, but did you know that the genes commonly associated with breast cancer, BRCA1 and BRCA2 are also associated with ovarian cancer? What many women don’t know about these genes is that approximately 15% of women with ovarian cancer test positive for BRCA gene mutations.1,2
The Facts About BRCA and Ovarian Cancer:
- Women with BRCA gene mutations have an increased risk of developing ovarian cancer.4
- In the general population, 1.4 percent4 of women will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer, while up to 40 percent of women with BRCA 1/2 mutations will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer in their lifetime.5
- An estimated 15% of ovarian cancers are linked to BRCA mutations.1,2
- BRCA gene mutations can play a key role in serous ovarian cancer, the most common form of ovarian cancer.6
- Nearly one half of women with ovarian cancer who are BRCA-positive have no significant family history of breast or ovarian cancer.7
Is There a BRCA Test?
Yes! Testing for a BRCA gene mutation is not only available but recommended for all women with epithelial ovarian cancer3. The simple blood or saliva test can be performed in your physician’s office or local lab, and the test is covered by Medicare, Medicaid, and most private insurances. Testing is crucial because it can affect how your physician chooses to manage your ovarian cancer should you already have it or develop it.
Are you dealing with ovarian cancer, or do you know someone who has been diagnosed with ovarian cancer? Take a few minutes to visit myocjourney.com. There you will find information about diagnosis, BRCA gene testing, and treatment plans. There are even support networks that can help you through your journey if you have been diagnosed with ovarian cancer or alert you to what you should know about BRCA and ovarian cancer.
Dealing with cancer is tough for anyone, but with a great support network and the right tools it can be overcome. Knowing your own risks is the first step to finding the treatment that is right for you. If you or a loved one has experienced ovarian cancer what advice would you give others who are also dealing with an ovarian cancer diagnosis?
1. Pal T, Permuth-Wey J, Betts JA, et al. BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations account for a large proportion of ovarian carcinoma cases. Cancer. 2005;104(12):2807-2816.
2. National Cancer Institute. BRCA1 and BRCA2: Cancer risk and genetic testing. http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Risk/BRCA. Accessed June 2, 2014.
3. National Comprehensive Cancer Network. NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology: Genetic/Familial High-Risk Assessment: Breast and Ovarian. Version 4;2013.2
4. National Cancer Institute. BRCA1 and BRCA 2: Cancer risk and genetic testing. http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Risk/BRCA. Last Accessed: October 30, 2014.
5. Petrucelli N, et al.,1998 Sep 4 [Updated 2013 Sep 26]. In: Pagon RA, Adam MP, Bird TD, et al., editors. GeneReviews [Internet]. Seattle (WA): University of Washington, Seattle; 1993-2014.
6. Wang ZC, et al. Profiles of genomic instability in high-grade serous ovarian cancer predict treatment outcome. Clin Cancer Res. 2012;18:5806-5815.
7. Song H., The contribution of deleterious germline mutations in BRCA1, BRCA2 and the mismatch repair genes to ovarian cancer in the population. Human Molecular Genetics 2014;23(17):4703-4709.
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