Breast cancer screening
For women with a personal history of breast cancer, or a family history of breast cancer and/or a family history of abnormal breast-cancer related genes, speak with your health care provider to discuss breast cancer screening guidelines. The doctor will discuss which screening option may be right for you, whether you need to be screened earlier or more frequently than other women. Some screening options include:
- Genetic Testing: There are genetic tests available to determine if you have mutations in genes that are associated with increased risk of developing breast cancer. A genetic counselor may order testing for mutations in the following genes individually or as part of a larger panel such as BRCA1, BRCA2, ATM, CDH1, CHEK2, PALB2, PTEN, TP53.
- Frequent Screening: A screening plan for a woman at high risk of developing breast cancer may include:
- breast ultrasound
- monthly breast self-exam
- yearly breast exam by your doctor
- yearly mammogram starting at age 30 or younger
- yearly MRI scan every year starting at age 30 or younger
Women with an abnormal breast cancer gene have a much higher risk of developing breast cancer in between yearly screenings. For example, women with an abnormal BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene are recommended to have a mammogram and an MRI scan each year, about 6 months apart (for example, a mammogram in January and an MRI in July).