This week, breast cancer researchers from around the world identified 72 new gene mutations – and 65 of these are common among women with breast cancer.This is important research because the BRCA1 and BRCA2 risk mutations, which are present in less than 1% of women, only account for a fraction of all inherited breast cancers. Past studies and evidence indicated that about 10% of breast cancer was hereditary, but the discovery of these new mutations may prove that estimate is low.
This discovery may also change the future of breast cancer screening to include genetic testing, which costs less than $50 and is done through a blood test or saliva sample. Women who are found to have these genetic mutations would likely benefit from earlier mammography screening. It’s important for patients to know whether their cancer is due to an inherited genetic mutation because they may have an increased risk of other cancers and their treatment recommendations may differ based on that fact.
Healthcare providers can use this new information as an opportunity to communicate new guidelines that could identify more at-risk women through improved screening. To learn more about the study click here.
Effective communication strategies are almost impossible to pull off with limited staff and budget working toward that goal. West helps medical practices bridge that communication gap, delivering effective communications such as automated patient reminders, surveys – and marketing solutions to keep patients on track with treatment, improve quality of care and notify them of new treatment opportunities.