Managing Cancer Risk: Miss America Contestant’s Decision Puts Genetics and Cancer Center Stage

Win or lose, Miss America contestant Allyn Rose made news with her decision to undergo a double mastectomy. According to the Associated Press, Rose, who lost her mother to breast cancer, inherited a rare genetic mutation which might put her at greater risk for developing cancer.

Her decision to have the preventive surgery has sparked questions about genetics, cancer risk and strategies for preventing cancer.

If you have a question about genetic factors that increase cancer risk, you can ask the Dana-Farber cancer genetics team.

The Dana-Farber Cancer Genetics and Prevention Program offers advanced genetic tests to determine an individual’s risk for inherited forms of cancer. The program also offers counseling and education, along with plans for monitoring patients for the earliest signs of cancer, diagnosing it if it occurs, and, in many cases, preventing it from arising.

You can also learn more about genetic predisposition to cancer, how cancer evolves in families, and how cancer cells differ from normal cells in your body on Dana-Farber’s Slideshare channel.

Join Judy Garber, MD, MPH, director of the Center for Cancer Genetics and Prevention at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, as she explores the basics of cancer genetics, DNA mutations, genetic screening, management, and more.