Thursday, April 16, 2009

No relief

My mom is negative. I had such high anxiety going into the appointment. High. And when the counselor came in and said it was negative I expected some big sense of relief to wash over me. But there wasn't any.

So it's both good and bad that she is negative.

The good is that we know the BRCA1 & BRCA2 are not carried by my mom.

The bad?

Well given oral history of my Dad there is not quite enough to test Kim and I. One of our aunts is currently in treatment for breast cancer. The counselor asked if we could ask her to come in for testing. Now any other aunt that Kim and I have would likely not even think twice. This aunt? She is upset with my dad who is the executor of my grandma's estate and they are not speaking. So she didn't even want us to know that she had breast cancer. There is no way that she would agree to testing. So basically Kim and I could have a chance that we have it from our dad's side.

The genetist is pretty convinced that my mom is a carrier of some breast cancer gene, but one that they cannot test for yet. Apparently there is possible testing for a BRCA3 & BRCA4 in the works. So if something comes in, they will call my mom in for additional testing.

In the meantime, it means that Kim and I need to have yearly mamograms and yearly MRI's, usually spaced 6 months apart. The counselor will help see that our doctors order this and insurance pays for it. When we hit 45, they recommend that we seriously consider tomaxafin for prevention. It has it's own side effects and issues.

So although I don't feel a great sense of relief, I fee better.

Oh, and my Mom banked her blood with the U of M. So if she is not here and some test comes along, we can access her blood for testing to see if there is genetic history for the disease. Thanks mom!

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