Genetic Counseling

What is a genetic counselor?

Genetic counselors are healthcare professionals with special training in medical genetics and psychosocial counseling. As part of the thyroid and parathyroid multidisciplinary team, the genetic counselor evaluates the likelihood that a hereditary cancer condition is responsible for the your personal and/or family history of cancer.

What can I expect at my genetic counseling appointment?

Prior to your genetic counseling appointment, the genetic counselor will complete a risk assessment to assess the likelihood that a hereditary cancer condition is responsible for your personal and/or family history of cancer. The genetic counselor will review the risk assessment results at your appointment, and discuss possible genetic testing options.

How much does genetic testing cost?

There are a variety of hereditary cancer conditions and therefore a multitude of genetic testing options available to each patient. As part of the genetic counseling appointment, your genetic counselor will discuss the cost of genetic testing and ensure you are aware of potential expenses prior to submitting a blood sample for genetic testing.

How does genetic testing affect my insurability?

There are federal and state laws that protect you against genetic discrimination. As part of the genetic counseling appointment, your genetic counselor will discuss genetic discrimination prior to submitting a blood sample for genetic testing.

How can genetic counseling help me if I already have cancer?

Individuals with a hereditary cancer condition are at an increased risk for specific types of cancer. If you have a hereditary cancer condition your physician and genetic counselor will create a personalized screening protocol to try and prevent future cancers through early detection and prevention. Your genetic counselor will also discuss the implications for family members who may be at risk for the same hereditary cancer condition.

How can I make an appointment with a genetic counselor?

If you have concerns about a hereditary cancer condition in your family please speak with your physician. The thyroid and parathyroid multidisciplinary team has a referral process to ensure patients are scheduled to see the genetic counselor in a timely manner.

Download a PDF about Genetic Testing