K Jyothilal is 30 years old. His eldest sister was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 35. Their mother died of breast cancer at the age of 50. It was later tested that his sister got it genetically and found a variation in the gene called BRC1.
Jyothilal's doubt is whether he is at the risk of having breast cancer and that should men like him who detect a variation in this gene, get tested for breast cancer?
A variation in the BRCA1 gene has been found in your family. In women, it increases the chances of breast cancer. If one gets breast cancer under the age of 50, this may indicate a genetic variation that increases the risk of breast cancer not only in women but also in men.
For example, the risk of breast cancer in men who don’t show a genetic variation is 1 in 1000. But if there is a variation in the BRCAI gene it will rise up to 20 in 1000. But there will be more risk of prostate gland cancer in men.
Both men and women are genetically predisposed to develop pancreatic skin cancer called melanoma. So it would be better if you see a genetic specialist and have your genetics screened to determine if there is a difference and take appropriate preventative measures.
(Information courtesy: Malayala Manorama Weekly)