The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has updated its recommendations on screening for the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genetic mutations that account for 15% of ovarian cancer cases and between 5% and 10% of breast cancer cases.
The USPSTF’s recommendation statement, published in JAMA along with the task force’s evidence report, represents a significant change to the group’s 2013 recommendations and broadens the pool of women for whom primary care physicians should conduct a risk assessment and potentially refer for genetic counseling and testing.
Previously, the USPSTF recommended risk assessment for women with a family history of breast cancer, ovarian cancer or both. Now that’s been broadened to include women who previously had ovarian or breast cancer but are now cancer-free, as well as women with ancestry associated with BRCA1 or BRCA2 genetic mutations. In the latter group, there’s a well-established link between Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry and the mutations.
“The addition of women with prior breast and ovarian cancer is an important step forward,” wrote Susan Domchek, MD, and Mark Robson, MD, of the University of Pennsylvania Basser Center for BRCA, in a JAMAeditorial on the USPSTF statement.
Read the full article Here.
You can find more commentary on the USPSTF recommendation across the JAMA Network journals. The following editorials commenting on the task force statement were published:
JAMA Oncology: “Hereditary Cancer Evaluation in 2019–A Rapidly Evolving Landscape.”
JAMA also has published an open-access article that you can share with interested patients that is called “Should I Be Tested for BRCA Mutations?”