Last week, I had the great pleasure of attending the annual Tennessee Cancer Coalition (TC2) Summit, held this year in Chattanooga. Representatives from various health care systems, patient advocator organizations and oncology professionals from all over the state as well as South East region were present for two days of fantastic lectures. The presentation that particularly resonated with me was Dr. Sanford Sharp’s talkCancer in Your Genes.
Dr. Sharp led the group through a brief history of genetics by incorporating it into an Oncology 101 crash course with the notion that cancer is “fundamentally a genetic disease.” Dr. Sharp presented two case studies from patients who elected to have genetic testing for cancer risk factors. A potential outcome that I found to be most interesting is a person with no known family history of the disease can be diagnosed with cancer, undergo genetic testing and discover a genetic mutation that caused the cancer, such as belonging to a certain ethnicity group that is susceptible to a specific genetic mutation.
While it is both fascinating and encouraging that the field of cancer genetics is burgeoning with sophisticated knowledge and advancements, it is an area of the cancer care plan that should not be taken lightly questions and concerns should and need to be voiced. The Supportive Services staff at the PearlPoint Cancer Support will not only listen to your concerns, but will also provide you with access to resources to give you the confidence to make the best-informed decision for YOU. For as everyone has a unique DNA make-up, each person’s cancer journey is their own. The landscape of oncology genetic testing is ever-evolving on the scary terrain of cancer; you don’t have to forge ahead alone. PearlPoint is at the ready for any and all of your cancer questions and concerns!
|Blog Author: Megan O’Roark|