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Friday, July 11, 2008

Bad Genes

Yesterday I got the results of my genetic testing. I tested positive for the BRCA 1 gene. We pretty much new that this would be the result because of my cancer being hormone negative. Having this gene means that I had a 85% chance of getting breast cancer sometime in my life. I actually have an even higher chance of developing breast cancer in my other breast now that I have already had cancer. With this gene, there is also an increased risk of developing ovarian cancer by age 40. My mom actually went with me yesterday to get the results and was told since I tested positive, she also has the gene. Her paternal grandmother died of breast cancer at the age of 44. Because my mom has the gene, my great-grandmother also had the gene and it has continued to be passed down all the way to me. Charley has a 50/50 chance of having inherited the gene from me. However, if she did, I am confident that by the time she even has to worry about breast cancer, there will be a cure.

Because of the increased risk for ovarian cancer, I had an ultrasound done yesterday of my ovaries and a blood test. I should know the results of those on Monday. Receiving the results of the gene test yesterday only reinforced my decision to have a bilateral mastectomy. I'm not so sure that having the gene is such a bad thing. At least I know why I developed the cancer and how to prevent it from showing back up.

Last night I went to my mom's support group that she has been attending for almost 20years. I met some awesome women and was very encouraged by their stories of recovery and survival. It was nice to go with my mom and meet some of the women I had heard about for so many years. I am looking forward to going back and being an inspiration to them. This week, I would ask that you pray for strength. In addition, please pray that the ultrasound of the ovaries would come back negative. I am ready move forward in this journey so that I can move on with my life.

1 comment:

andrea wasson hamilton said...

Hi Melody. My name is Andrea and I'm Ryans cousin. I just wanted to let you know that you are a very strong woman and I love that you are out there to help others. I had the beginning stages of cervical cancer right after I had my son in 2003. Every biopsy I had was worse so I had to have a hysterectomy. I really wanted more children but I was lucky to have my son because I had so many doctors tell me due to my female problems that I would never have children.
You are a God Send.