ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Using Music and Sports to Improve Kids' Asthma
Know Your Asthma Triggers
Traffic, Dust Linked to Asthma in Kids
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Needling Away Your Headaches With Acupuncture
Holistic Treatment for Candida Infection
Acupuncture Cuts Dry Mouth in Cancer Patients
ANIMAL CARE
Safe Toys for Dogs
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
BONES & JOINTS
Many Americans Fall Short on Their Vitamin D
Heart Failure Raises Risk of Fractures
Postmenopausal Women With Breast Cancer Face Joint Issues
CANCER
Poor Women Seem to Be Skipping Breast Cancer Drugs
Well Water Might Raise Bladder Cancer Risk
Smoking Ups Risk of Second Breast Cancer
CAREGIVING
Mild Flu Season Coming to a Close
Caregivers Face Multiple Strains Tending Older Parents
Undoing the 'Big Baby' Trend
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Vitamins Do Older Women Little Good
Walk 100 Steps a Minute for 'Moderate' Exercise
Laughter Can Boost Heart Health
COSMETIC
Wrinkle Fillers Need Better Label Warnings: FDA Panel
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
The Acne Drug Accutane More Than Doubles Depression Risk
DENTAL, ORAL
Gum Disease Might Boost Cancer Risk
Health Tip: At Risk for Gingivitis
Toothbrushing May Stave Off Heart Woes
DIABETES
Whole Grains Take a Bite Out of Type 2 Diabetes Risk
Red-Grape Compound May Improve Diabetes
Abnormal Heart Rhythm Boosts Death Risk for Diabetics
DIET, NUTRITION
'Organic' May Not Mean Healthier
DASH Diet Has Extra Benefits for Women's Health
Vitamin B12 Key to Aging Brain
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Common Pesticide Tied to Development Delays in Kids
U.S. Diet Needs Heart-Felt Overhaul
Environmental Chemicals May Affect Male Reproduction
EYE CARE, VISION
Decorative Halloween Eye Lenses May Pose Serious Risks
Nearly 18 Million Will Have Macular Degeneration by 2050
Cases of Age-Related Farsightedness to Soar
FITNESS
Bursts of Vigorous Activity Appear to Be a 'Stress-Buffer'
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
Simple Steps Get Walkers Moving
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
HRT Use Raises Risk of Stomach Trouble
Gum Chewing May Speed Colon Surgery Recovery
Olive Oil May Protect Against Bowel Disease
GENERAL HEALTH
How Weight Loss Can Help the Heart
Workplace Wellness Seems to Really Work
Have a Goal in Life? You Might Live Longer
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Magnet Therapy May Ease Hard-to-Treat Depression
Imaging Sheds Light on How Acupuncture Works
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
B-Vitamins Help Protect Against Stroke, Heart Disease
Using Light Therapy to Silence Harmful Brain Activity
Fondness for Fish Keeps Japanese Hearts Healthy
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Poor Restroom Cleaning Causes Cruise-Ship Sickness
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
Chinese 'Devil Dung' Plant Could Be a Swine Flu Fighter
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
School Meals Need to Get Healthier
Even Young Kids Can Learn CPR
Boosting Kids' Stroke IQ May Save Lives
MEN'S HEALTH
Low Vitamin D Levels May Boost Men's Heart Attack Risk
Low Iron Levels Cut Cancer Risk in Men With PAD
Exercise May Prevent Prostate Cancer: Study Shows
MENTAL HEALTH
The 3LS Wellness Program for Reversing Chronic Symptoms and Creating Lasting Health
Estrogen May Help Men's Hearts
A Little Alcohol May Stave Off Alzheimer's
PAIN
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Pre-Pregnancy Weight Linked to Babies' Heart Problems
Pregnant Women Exposed To Certain Pollutants Could Lower Childs IQ
Woman in America Are Delaying Motherhood, Study Says
SENIORS
Laughter Can Stimulate a Dull Appetite
The Juice From Beetroots May Boost Stamina
Community Exercise Programs Boost Seniors' Strength
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Most Women With Osteoporosis Unaware of Raised Fracture Risk
Supportive Weigh-In Program Keeps Pounds Off
Woman in America Are Delaying Motherhood, Study Says
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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