If you are concerned that you have a family history of breast cancer, and you are worried about your own risk, talk to your Doctor. If your Doctor thinks you may have a risk of carrying the BRCA gene mutation, they might suggest you are tested. The genetic test for BRCA has 2 steps:
- Your relative with cancer has a blood test to see if they have the gene mutation. The results of this can take 4 to 8 weeks.
- If your relative’s test is positive, you can have a blood test at a genetic clinic to see if you have the same gene mutation and predict your risk of getting breast cancer.
If relatives with cancer are not available, you can have the BRCA test if you have at least a 10% chance of having the gene mutation. This usually means you have a very strong history of breast cancer at a young age in your family.
BRCA in the Jewish community
Having Jewish ancestry increases your risk of having a BRCA gene fault- 1 in 40 Ashkenazi Jews and around 1 in 140 Sephardi Jews has a faulty BRCA gene, compared to around 1 in 250 individuals in the UK general population.
NHS England is now offering free BRCA gene testing for anyone living in England, aged 18 or over with one or more Jewish grandparent.
For more information visit https://jewishbrca.org/
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This information was published in April 2021. It will be revised in April 2024.