Panic about family history of cancer?

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Question from cc498: I have a family history of breast cancer (as well as bowel, liver). I go through stages of not thinking about it--then all of a sudden I get a feeling of panic. How can I ensure that I don't pass my panic onto my kids?
Answers - David Spiegel There are 2 issues here. One is that there are now possibilities for doing genetic testing, so you may want to have yourself tested if family members are willing as well. One option is talking to a genetic counselor about a genetic risk factor. It sounds like you go from being over- to under-modulated. It's possible your kids think about this, depending on their ages. Maybe when you are feeling more in the middle you can discuss it with them. See if they have anything they want to talk about with you.

The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Feelings about Breast Cancer featured David Spiegel, Ph.D. and moderator Marisa Weiss, M.D. answering your questions about the emotional effects of breast cancer diagnosis and treatment.

Editor's Note: This conference took place in October 2000.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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