Women with a family history and a genetic predisposition for breast cancer have special needs - such as personalized screening schedules and in some cases, genetic counseling. At the Penrose-St. Francis Breast Care Center, the High-Risk Breast Clinic is designed to help women learn if they are at a high risk for breast cancer and what they should do if they are at risk.
Approximately 5% of breast cancers and 10% of ovarian cancers are hereditary in nature and approximately 10-20% of women with either breast or ovarian cancer had a first- or second-degree relative with one of these cancers. The High Risk Breast Cancer Clinic, established in 2010, assists women at high-risk for developing breast cancer by providing risk assessment, screening and counseling. The service provides a detailed risk analysis to assist patients and their care providers in medical management.
"Women who come in will have a clinical breast exam with one of our fellowship-trained breast surgeons as well as a genetic counseling appointment," explains Peggy Thomas, RN, breast care nurse navigator. "Then I close out the session with a discussion about self-breast care and healthy living. We give each woman a customized care plan, which we also share with her primary care physician or gynecologist. The goal is to make sure women at high risk get the screenings they need when they need them."
To schedule an appointment or for more information, call 719-776-8200, option 3.