Genetic Testing

Genetic Testing

December 14, 2021
Everett Bonner, MD
Everett Bonner, MD

Breast Surgery



A lot of patients are concerned about their genetics. They may have a family history, whether it’s a primary relative, mother, sister, father, brother, even grandmother, or even a daughter. I have a primary relative diagnosed with breast cancer, or they have a remote family history, distant cousins, maternal aunts, or paternal aunts, which is aunts on your mother’s side or your father’s side. They’re concerned about their true risk.


There are very strict guidelines on those patients that need genetic testing. And what does that genetic testing do? Well, we’re looking for gene mutations that are inside of you that may put you at a higher risk of breast cancer. The two most popular are BRCA1 and BRCA2. Those are very significant because those can place you anywhere between a range of 40 to 80% risk of breast cancer, depending on whether you have a BRCA or we call BRCA1 or BRCA2, but there are another two dozen genes and multiple ones that are out there that also put you at an increased risk. And those risks can range anywhere between 20 and 50%.


Key Takeaways

1. People with a family history of breast cancer are often concerned about their genes.

2. Genetic testing looks for mutations (changes) that may put you at a higher risk of breast cancer.

3. The two most popular mutations are BRCA1 and BRCA2 and can make you 40-80% more at risk.

4. There are another two dozen genes that also put you at an increased risk – anywhere between 20-50%.