ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Molecule in Skin May Link Eczema and Asthma
Air Quality Better in Northeast, Midwest
Asthmatics Who Quit Smoking May Reverse Lung Damage
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Alternative Treatments May Boost IVF Success
Acupuncture Cuts Dry Mouth in Cancer Patients
Indigo Ointment Benefits Psoriasis Patients
ANIMAL CARE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
BONES & JOINTS
Bone Loss Stable on Restricted Calorie Diet
More Faces Being Spared in Motor Vehicle Accidents
Chronic Low Back Pain Is on the Rise
CANCER
Strenuous Daily Workout May Keep Cancer at Bay
Yoga May Bring Calm to Breast Cancer Treatment
Many Ignore Symptoms of Bladder Trouble
CAREGIVING
Hospital Volume Imperfect Gauge of Cancer Surgery Outcomes
Recession Scrambling Health Spending in U.S.
Robots May Come to Aging Boomers' Rescue
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Migraines in Pregnancy Boost Vascular Risks
Smog Tougher on the Obese
Bad Marriages Harder on Women's Health
COSMETIC
Study Evaluates Laser Therapies for Hair Removal
New Genetic Links to Baldness Discovered
Wrinkle Fillers Need Better Label Warnings: FDA Panel
DENTAL, ORAL
Acupuncture May Ease Anxiety Over Dental Work
Obesity Boosts Gum Disease Risk
Gummy Bears Join Cavity Fight
DIABETES
Treatment for Type 2 Diabetes Updated
Americans Consuming More Sugary Beverages
Drug May Not Help Diabetes-Related Eye Damage
DIET, NUTRITION
Myrrh May Lower High Cholesterol
6 Million U.S. Kids Lack Enough Vitamin D
Iced Teas Pose High Risk of Kidney Stones
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Genetics, Environment Shape Sexual Behavior
Household Chemicals May Affect Cholesterol Levels
As Earth Warms, Lyme Disease Could Flourish
EYE CARE, VISION
Eye Problems, Hearing Loss May Be Linked
Protein Might One Day Prevent Blindness
Decorative Halloween Eye Lenses May Pose Serious Risks
FITNESS
Avoiding a Holiday Season of Discontent
When It Comes to Lifting, the Pros Have Your Back
Vigorous Treadmill Workout Curbs Appetite Hormones
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Olive Oil May Protect Against Bowel Disease
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
Gum Chewing May Speed Colon Surgery Recovery
GENERAL HEALTH
Deployment Takes Toll on Army Wives
Common Social Groups and Race, Seem to Help People Relate
More Single Women Are Having Babies
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Using Light Therapy to Silence Harmful Brain Activity
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
Magnet Therapy May Ease Hard-to-Treat Depression
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
A Little Alcohol May Help the Heart: Studies
An Apple a Day May Help Keep Heart Disease Away
Man's Best Friend Helps Mend Broken Hearts
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
Bacterial Infections May Succumb to Honey
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Pool Chemicals Raise Kids Allergy, Asthma Risk
Exercise Helps Reduce Falls in Young and Old
Backpack Safety Should Be on Back-to-School Lists
MEN'S HEALTH
Physical Activity May Prolong Survival After Colon Cancer
Exercise May Prevent Prostate Cancer: Study Shows
Could Chinese Herb Be a Natural Viagra?
MENTAL HEALTH
Worries About Weight Are Tied to Teen Suicide Tries
Man's Best Friend Helps Mend Broken Hearts
A Simple 'Thank You' Brings Rewards to All
PAIN
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Sugary Colas Tied to Gestational Diabetes
Alternative Treatments May Boost IVF Success
Yoga's Benefits Outweigh Risks for Pregnant Women
SENIORS
Healthy Diet Could Cut Alzheimer's Disease Risk
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
For Older Walkers, Faster Is Better
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Daylight Savings: Not a Bright Time for All
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Calcium Helps Ward Off Colon Cancer
Mom and Baby Alike May Benefit From Exercise
Omega-3 May Reduce Endometriosis Risk
Add your Article

Sharing Cancer Info May Be Empowering

FRIDAY, May 15 (HealthDay News) -- Parents with family secrets may struggle to decide what to share with their children. But when it comes to cancer running in the family, a new study shows that those who choose to reveal the results of genetic tests are glad they did.

Scientists know that two genes are to blame for the majority of inherited breast and ovarian cancer cases, and tests can show if a woman has those genes.

For the study, researchers from the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at Georgetown University Medical Center interviewed 221 mothers and 124 partners (mostly fathers) before the genetic test results were revealed and again one and six months later.

More than 60 percent of the mothers and more than 40 percent of their partners talked with their children about the results within a month of getting them. Even more had the discussion within six months of getting the results, the findings show.

Mothers who revealed the test results reported being more satisfied with their decision than the ones who decided to keep them a secret, according to the researchers.

The findings are to be presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting, being held later this month in Florida.

"Both parents make decisions about revealing predictive genetic test results to children within a relatively short period of time, even though there is no immediate health implication for children to learn that news," said lead investigator Kenneth Tercyak, an associate professor of oncology and pediatrics at Lombardi. "Children growing up in families surrounded by cancer can be worried about whether cancer may happen to them someday. Cancer genetic tests provide a piece of that information."

A positive side effect of the decision to share the results was a more open parent-child relationship, Tercyak said.

Sharing test results can be considered part of a family's attitude toward health and wellness, said study co-author Beth Peshkin, a genetic counselor at Lombardi.

"Although we do not yet know how to offset familial risks of cancer in future generations, it can be very empowering for parents to promote positive health habits in their children early on, like not smoking, eating a well-balanced diet, exercising regularly and avoiding excess exposure to the sun," Peshkin said.

More information

The U.S. National Cancer Institute has more about genetic testing for cancer.



-- Dennis Thompson



SOURCE: Georgetown University Medical Center, news release, May 14, 2009

Last Updated: May 15, 2009

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