Another timely guest-post from a regular readers and commenters mischief manager and baraqiel.
mm: When I was 36, I was diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer (ductal carcinoma in situ, for those of you who know the terminology). I was extremely lucky, as it was found on a baseline mammogram. Because it was such an early stage, I didn’t need chemo or radiation; I just had a mastectomy. Because the carcinoma cells were diffuse through a large area of the breast, lumpectomy wasn’t an option.
Fast-forward 20 years. I now have a daughter who is a young adult. She has a fibroadenoma in her breast, which she would like to have removed. (Wiki defines them as small, solid, rubbery, noncancerous, harmless lumps composed of fibrous and glandular tissue. They are extremely common, especially in women with large and/or dense breasts.) So she goes to a surgeon, who suggests to her that both she and I be tested for brca1, the gene that is associated with breast cancer, especially in women of Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity. He says that I should be tested because if I am, the test will be less expensive for my daughter.
So…what do we do?