Top
Millennium Post

Sir Ganga Ram Hospital starts genetic counseling for early cancer detection

Sir Ganga Ram Hospital (SGRH) on Monday launched the first of it’s kind comprehensive Hereditary Cancer Genetic Programme to identify cancer disposing genes. People with a family history of cancer, can now go for genetic counseling for early detection of the genes which cause cancer. Hopital sources said, 'under this programme, members of high-risk families are counselled to help them cope and understand the risks and offered genetic testing for cancer predisposing genes to estimate individualised risk'.

The director of the department of genetics at the hospital I C Verma said, 'Those who are already affected with cancer are made to understand how genetic mutation can affect their future treatment. As part of genetic counseling, predictive genetic testing will be offered to unaffected family members who are at risk.' Genetic testing is available for genes that cause cancer of breast, ovaries, colon, eyes (retinoblastoma), brain,  sarcomas, thyroid, pancreas, kidneys, prostate and leukemias / lymphomas in the NABL accredited genetic laboratory.

Verma said, 'Individuals who test positive can reduce the risk by adopting preventive strategies such as prophylactic surgery (removal of breast, ovaries, uterus), chemo-prevention (using drugs to reduce the chance of developing cancer, or life-style changes such as restraining from smoking and alcohol consumption, reducing UV exposure, and avoiding environmental exposure to cancer causing chemicals.’ Under the programme, Pratibha Bhai, consultant scientist of department of Genetics said, 'Those affected with cancer are made to understand how genetic mutation can affect their future treatment. As part of genetic counselling, predictive genetic testing will be offered to unaffected family members who are at risk'.

The cost varies for genetic testing for different kinds od cancers. About 10  per cent of cancers in adults and about 20 per cent in children are hereditary. The importance of genetic testing was highlighted by Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie, who tested positive for a mutation in the breast cancer gene, and opted for breast removal to prevent development of cancer.
Next Story
Share it