The cancer genetics service at KGH is also known as the Familial Oncology Program. The program offers support to you and your family if you are at risk to develop cancer based on your genetic or family traits. You can learn more about genetic forms of cancer and how your family history affects your cancer risk by visiting the Cancer Care South East's family genetic forms of cancer webpage. For more information about the general genetics program at KGH, click here.
Cancer genetics can help you understand your risk for cancer, get cancer screening, or access care from cancer specialists.
You need a referral from your family doctor or cancer specialist to visit the Familial Oncology Program.
Genetic counselling is a service that provides information and advice about genetic conditions. A cancer genetic counselling appointment usually takes 45 to 60 minutes and involves:
- A review of your medical history and family health history.
- An overview of basic genetic information.
- A personal risk assessment to help you determine if there could be a genetic form of cancer in your family.
- A review of your genetic testing options. Genetic testing can help you confirm whether or not a genetic form of cancer exists in your family.
- A review of your cancer screening options. Cancer screening can help you monitor your health and find cancer early, when it is most treatable.
Genetic assessment and genetic testing
Having a family history of cancer might increase your risk of developing cancer. A genetic counsellor can help you decide if a genetic test would be helpful. They can also explain the advantages, disadvantages, and limitations of genetic testing.
A genetic test is a blood test to find out if a genetic form of cancer exists in your family. Your blood will be taken using a needle. It will be looked at by a geneticist to see if you have genes that are linked to being at risk for cancer.
After your genetic test, your genetic counsellor will explain:
- The meaning of a genetic test result.
- What family members are at increased risk to develop cancer.
- Cancer screening and preventative treatment options available to you and your family. To do this, we work closely with the High Risk Cancer Clinic and breast cancer screening programs.
You can leave a telephone message when cancer genetics is closed.