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Hered Cancer Clin Pract. 2004 Feb 15;2(1):19-23. doi: 10.1186/1897-4287-2-1-19.

A Counselling Model for BRCA1/2 Genetic Susceptibility Testing.

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  • 1Department of Clinical Genetics, Department of Medical Psychology and Psychotherapy, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, the Netherlands.


When BRCA1/2 genetic susceptibility testing was introduced in the clinic in the mid-nineties, the "Huntington protocol" was used in the counselling of individuals applying for genetic testing. This protocol includes at least three sessions with a certain reflection period before blood sampling. Evidence on the psychological impact of BRCA1/2 genetic susceptibility testing has been accumulating in the last years. We will give a short overview of these psychological studies in order to reflect the need of using the extensive Huntington protocol in the counselling of individuals applying for BRCA1/2 genetic susceptibility testing. A shortened and more flexible BRCA1/2 counselling protocol is delineated, in which the attention is focused on the needs and strengths of the individual.

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