Stressed about family history of cancer?


Question from Milly: I have a family history of breast cancer, and it is constantly on my mind to the point where I am starting to obsess about it. How can I get past this?
Answers - Patricia A. Ganz, M.D. If possible, you should find a clinical program, either in a breast center or a cancer center, where they are working with high-risk individuals, so that you can get accurate information about your risk and things you can do to reduce your risk of getting breast cancer. There are breast centers at many cancer centers and community cancer centers with people who are experts in counseling women who have family histories. So a local referral would be the first step.
Marisa Weiss, M.D. Frequently, a person's sense of her own risk is usually greater than her calculated risk once her family history is reviewed carefully at one of the centers. If, however, you are in fact at high risk, there are some effective strategies and practical things that you can do to help reduce your risk.

On Wednesday, October 17, 2001, our Ask-the-Expert Online Conference was called Quality of LifePatricia A. Ganz, M.D.,Marisa Weiss, M.D., answered your questions about how breast cancer can affect physical, emotional, social, and sexual aspects of your life.

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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