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Patient Educ Couns. 2006 Dec;64(1-3):96-103. Epub 2006 Jan 19.

Results of a randomized study of telephone versus in-person breast cancer risk counseling.

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  • 1Institute of Psychology, Department of Rehabilitation Psychology, University of Freiburg, 79085 Freiburg, Germany.



Women of all risk levels have reported high interest in obtaining genetic testing for breast cancer risk. Breast cancer risk counseling may help women to learn about their risk and appropriate options of testing. This study measured the effects of an intervention in-person and by telephone, compared to a control group.


Participants were 340 women, recruited through a network of primary care physicians. They received a baseline questionnaire in the mail, were randomized to one of the three study arms, and completed a follow-up survey 3 months later.


Both types of counseling were very well received. The counseling decreased women's cancer worry, risk perceptions, and intentions to pursue genetic testing. There were similar effects for both in-person and telephone counseling.


Genetic counseling can be used to inform women at all risk levels about their breast cancer risk.


Breast cancer risk counseling can be done in-person and by telephone--thereby reaching women in remote areas.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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