Why Is It Important to Know My Status?

Finding out that you have a BRCA mutation can be overwhelming, but there are benefits to knowing your status, whether or not you have cancer.

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Benefits of knowing your BRCA status

If you have a family history of cancer, but don’t have cancer:

Having a BRCA mutation means that you’re at a higher risk of developing certain types of cancer. This knowledge can empower you to regularly screen for cancer or take action that may reduce your risk. When breast cancer is found early before it has spread, 99% of women live longer than 5 years after their cancer is diagnosed.

If you have received a diagnosis of cancer:

Discovering a BRCA mutation can influence your doctor’s approach to treating your cancer. Certain breast cancer treatment options can target tumor cells with BRCA mutations. This means that having a BRCA mutation could enable you to receive this kind of targeted therapy. And because BRCA mutations can be hereditary, knowing that you have one can help inform your family about their risk of also having the mutation.

If your cancer comes back:

Uncovering a BRCA mutation can open up treatment options. Targeted therapy is a possible option for certain people with recurrent cancer and a BRCA mutation. You’ll need to talk with your doctor to decide which options are best for you.