Any advice for my cousin?

I was diagnosed on 1 April aged 42, lumpectomy, nodes clear. Grade 3, 22 mm tumour, starting chemo soon. My maternal great-grandmother had BC (aged 60), it missed a generation, although her daughter (my nana) had cancer of the uterus, ovaries removed also. My aunt (my mum’s sister) was diagnosed with BC at 46, 4 years ago, mastectomy and node clearance - sadly lost her battle aged 49. I met with her daughter yesterday who is 31 and obviously worried about the history. Her doctor said it was unlikely that she’d be a carrier of the gene due to family history and offered no further advice/tests. We’re thinking she should get checked out. I did see a genetecist a couple of years ago who ruled out family history and said I was only at a marginally higher risk than the rest of the female population, however, we do feel it’s getting uncomfortably close to my cousin. Any advice welcome. Thanks.

Hi Ellie,

I was dx with bc in oct 07 at 32 also grade 3, 2 nodes involved. When we started looking into the history side of things my grandma and 3 of her sisters all died of bc all between the ages of 42 and 59. Because of my age they decided to test me and was found to have the brca2 gene, they then tested my dad and my sister, my dad is a carrier and where i get mine from, but thankgod my sister didnt have the gene. I have since finding out, had bi-lateral masectomy and recon and full hystrectomy and oopherectomy as a preventative. The test is done by taking blood, i waited 8 weeks for my results. They say if women are pre menapausal with family history there is higher risk. I dont think they will test your cousin but i would ask to be tested yourself then take it from there. There is a site called brca umbrella there loads of info if you want to take a look.

Take care

Leslee x

Hi Ellie,

To strengthen your case you could do some family research. Cancers to look out for are breast, ovarian, pancreatic and prostate. It may be worthwhile drawing up your family tree and presenting it to genetics if you feel you have cause to be concerned.