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Lynch Syndrome: Just The Facts

03 March, 2014

Did you know?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about 3% of colorectal cancer cases are due to an inherited condition known as Lynch syndrome. In addition to colorectal or colon cancer, Lynch syndrome can also increase the risk for other cancers including endometrial and ovarian cancers. Those with this condition are at a much higher risk of developing one of these cancers, especially at a young age (younger than 50 years). Immediate relatives of people with Lynch syndrome, such as parents, children, sisters, and brothers, have a 50% chance of having this condition as well. Other blood relatives such as grandparents, aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews are also at increased risk to have Lynch syndrome.

The only way to determine if a person has Lynch syndrome is through genetic testing. Testing can be completed through screening of tumor tissue samples in those who are symptomatic and/or diagnostic testing of DNA from non-cancerous tissue samples. It’s recommended that those with colon cancer receive genetic testing to determine if the cause is Lynch syndrome. Family members of those individuals testing positive for the condition can benefit from this testing by either getting tested for Lynch syndrome themselves or beginning screening for colon and other cancers earlier and/or more frequently.

In Nevada there are several locations to receive genetic testing for Lynch syndrome and other cancers including Northern Nevada Genetic Counseling and Perinatal Associates of Northern Nevada in Reno, and HealthCare Partners Hematology/Oncology in Las Vegas.

Learn more about Lynch syndrome from the CDC or visit Lynch Syndrome International.

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