Breast Cancer Awareness Month: Genetics

Salisbury, Md. – Dr. Karen Barbosa from Tidal Health joined the Good Morning Delmarva team to talk about genetics and what that means for a breast cancer diagnosis.

According to  approximately 5% to 10% of breast cancers are inherited, passed down from parent to child. Most changes in DNA are harmless, but ones that cause a cancer risk are called deleterious mutations.

Everyone has BRCA 1 & BRCA 2 genes, the function of these genes are to keep breast cells growing normally and prevent any cancer growth. When there is a mutaion, then a person’s risk increases to about 72%.  On average, the risk is 1 out of 8 women will develop breast cancer. In total, there are about 30 genes that increase the risk of breast cancer according to Dr. Barbosa.

Dr. Barbosa says to check with your doctor to get your risk calculated or talk about your family and personal history. Then, if you do need genetic testing ask for an extended panel.

For more information on genetics, BRCA 1 and BRCA 2 go to

Categories: Good Morning Delmarva