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16 October 2007



It's not fair, but, currently there is not loiaslitgen that prevents this type of discrimination by an insurance company.I, myself, visited a Genetic Counselor to talk about the possibility of having the BRCA gene. We overlooked my family history and then the counselor advised that there is no protection against an insurance company dropping your coverage if they see the genetic testing in your file, and there is no protection against the Insurance company denying your claims should you get the disease.The best thing that you can do, if you know there is a high risk of Breast cancer (and even ovarian cancer, as there is a link between the two) for you, is to begin having mammograms as early as possible and having any unusual lumps checked out right away. Do a monthly self-exam. Talk to your doctor about the best time of the month to do the exam as the tissues change due to hormonal fluctuations. Breast tissue is on the dense side until about 35, but, that doesn't mean that you shouldn't have baseline scans done if you are younger than 35.One thing to consider, also, if you undergo the testing an are found to have the gene and elect to have the prophylactic mastectomy you can still get Breast cancer. The Susan G. Komen website has excellent information regarding genetic testing, prophylactic mastectomies and how to reduce your risk of Breast cancer.My choice was to opt to be more proactive with screenings rather than go through with genetic testing. Until loiaslitgen is put in place to protect those who have undergone testing from being discriminated against by insurance companies, I don't see a real benefit to patients who opt for the testing. Good communication of your concerns with your physician should lead to early prevention and detection techniques.

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