Genetic Counseling& Testing

Overview

Recent research has identified a number of genes related to inherited cancer risk. In fact, estimates suggest that between 5 and 10% of all cancers are due to an inherited gene mutation.

If you carry one of these inherited genetic mutations, you may have a significantly higher lifetime cancer risk compared to the general population. By considering personal and family medical histories, we can identify if you could benefit from meeting with a genetic counselor for a hereditary cancer risk assessment.

Genetic testing (or DNA testing) for cancer risk doesn’t reveal the presence or absence of cancer. Instead, it shows whether you have an inherited tendency (predisposition) for cancer. A positive result in a genetic screening doesn’t mean you’ll definitely develop a disease in the future, but it can help you choose the right preventive measures to minimize your risk and help you stay ahead of the disease if it does develop.

Why Get Tested?

Genetic counseling for cancer risk assessments may be appropriate for you if you have:

  • Concern or anxiety about your personal or hereditary cancer risk
  • Any of the following on your mother's or father's side of the family:
    • Diagnosed with cancer at an early age
    • More than one family member (on the same side of the family) with the same cancer
    • Individuals with bilateral cancers or more than one primary cancer
    • Two or more generations of your family affected by cancer
  • A cancer diagnosis along with being of Ashkenazi Jewish decent
  • Interest in screening for diseases common among your particular ethnic group
  • Interest in genetic testing for cancer genes and an interest in discussing cancer risk management options (genetic counseling, screening, preventive surgery and chemoprevention)

Services & Treatment

Though there aren’t physical risks involved with genetic testing, there can be a psychological impact. That’s why we recommend education and genetic counseling alongside genetic testing.

Our genetic counselors can assess your risk for a variety of inherited medical conditions like cancer, genetic disorders, and birth defects. The process includes reviewing the pattern and ages of cancer diagnosis in your family and discussing whether those results suggest an inherited predisposition to cancer.

We’ll consider the basic principles of genetics and inheritance, whether the appropriate genetic testing is available, and also the costs, risks and benefits of testing.

The goal of this process is to help you better understand what genetic diseases might mean for you, so you know your options and feel comfortable that you’re being looked after.

Aurora genetic counseling provides:

  • Confidential hereditary cancer risk assessment
  • Access to ongoing local and national cancer research studies
  • Education for patients, health care professionals and the community
  • Genetic testing and DNA banking when appropriate

To make an appointment, call Aurora's Cancer Genetic Counseling Program at 877-647-2502. You can also print a genetic counseling referral form for your doctor.

What to Expect

During your visit, the genetic counselor may talk to you about your genetic concerns and review your family cancer history at length. From there, a medical geneticist may perform a physical exam and administer laboratory tests, which could include a blood draw, a urine sample or a cheek swab.

In many cases, we may send your results to an Aurora laboratory testing facility for DNA analysis, where they may be tested for any genetic mutations.

Prevention & Management

Aurora Hereditary Cancer Prevention and Management Center (HCPMC)

Have genetic counseling and DNA testing determined that you or your family members have a hereditary cancer syndrome? Families with hereditary cancer syndromes are at high risk for multiple types of cancer. Even families whose genetic testing results are normal may be at increased risk for multiple cancers if they have complex cancer histories.

If your family history of cancer has been determined to be hereditary, or if your complex family history can’t be explained by genetic testing, you deserve comprehensive care from a multidisciplinary team of experts in a single, convenient location.

The Aurora Hereditary Cancer Prevention and Management Center (HCPMC) specializes in testing and monitoring individuals and families with complex or difficult hereditary cancer conditions.

Through the HCPMC, you can:

  • Gain a deeper understanding of your overall cancer risks
  • Receive a customized medical management plan that addresses your unique cancer risks
  • Stay updated on the latest genetic tests and research related to your hereditary cancer syndrome
  • Monitor your risks through long-term care with a dedicated cancer prevention team

If you’re at risk for multiple types of cancer, ask your doctor for a referral to the Aurora Hereditary Cancer Prevention and Management Center in Milwaukee or Green Bay.

The HCPMC in Milwaukee is located within the Vince Lombardi Cancer Clinic at St. Luke’s Medical Center. The HCPMC in Green Bay is located within the Vince Lombardi Cancer Clinic at Aurora BayCare Medical Center.

Call 877-647-2502 for more information.

Genetic Testing Locations

10400 75th St

Kenosha, WI 53142

262-948-5600

5300 Memorial Dr

Two Rivers, WI 54241

920-793-7300

4061 Old Peshtigo Rd

Marinette, WI 54143

715-732-8000

3003 W Good Hope Rd

Milwaukee, WI 53209

414-352-3100

8901 W Lincoln Ave

West Allis, WI 53227

414-328-6000

975 Port Washington RdSte 110

Grafton, WI 53024

262-387-8300

1222 N 23rd St

Sheboygan, WI 53081

920-457-6800

N84W16889 Menomonee Ave

Menomonee Falls, WI 53051

262-251-7500

36500 Aurora Dr

Summit, WI 53066

262-434-8800

855 N Westhaven Dr

Oshkosh, WI 54904

920-456-7870

2900 W Oklahoma Ave

Milwaukee, WI 53215

CPR Certified

414-649-6000

945 N 12th StSte 2110

Milwaukee, WI 53233

414-219-6809

2845 Greenbrier RdSte 250

Green Bay, WI 54311

920-288-4180
Treating your cancer, caring for you.
In addition to top-notch medical care and genetic testing centers, Aurora Health Care offers the following cancer resources:

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