Genetic Counseling - Knowledge is Power
Although most cancer is not inherited, approximately 5 – 10% of people with cancer have a hereditary form or a predisposition to cancer. Hereditary cancers occur because of a change (mutation) in certain genes. Inheriting these genetic mutations can increase a person’s risk for certain types of cancer. These genetic changes can be passed down from generation to generation through the mother’s or father’s side of the family.
At the Cancer Center of Santa Barbara,we understand that many factors must be considered when discussing cancer risk, including personality, coping style, and family experience with cancer. Our goal is to provide confidential information, reassurance, and support to cancer patient's and their families.
We offer comprehensive genetic counseling and testing services by a certified genetic counselor to patients and families at suspected risk for hereditary cancer.
Held at the Cancer Center, your first appointment will include:
Genetic testing for various inherited forms of cancer is available. Deciding whether or not to pursue testing is a personal choice that can be made at the time of the initial visit or at a future date. If you choose to undergo genetic testing, a blood sample will be taken and analyzed. Results are confidential and discussed with the certified genetic counselor.
Most insurance plans cover the cost of genetic counseling and testing. Limited financial assistance is available. Please note: insurance companies may not use your genetic information to deny you coverage or increase your premiums. State and federal laws are in place to protect you. For further information on these laws, you may speak with the certified genetic counselor.
Indicators of Hereditary Risk
The Cancer Center’s Genetic Counseling Program aims to help patients and families with a history of cancer better understand and manage cancer risk.
If you answer “yes” to any of the following questions, genetic counselingmay be especially beneficial to you and your family:
"Genetic counseling and testing provided our family with crucial, life-saving information." – Carrie Hagen