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Oncology (Williston Park). 1990 Jan;4(1):27-33; discussion 34, 37-8.

Counseling women at high risk for breast cancer.

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  • 1Breast Surveillance Service, Johns Hopkins Oncology Center.


Cancer risk analysis is a relatively new clinical service that has developed as more precise information has become available regarding specific risk factors. Both epidemiological and genetic factors contribute substantially to the identification of women at higher risk for developing breast cancer. The definition of what constitutes risk, an understanding of which factors influence risk, and the ability to present risk information clearly are critical features. In addition to providing information about risk and assessing each woman's perception of risk, the emotional issues must be addressed. The focus of intervention should center upon the benefits of early detection, assessment of breast self-examination skills, individualized breast cancer screening recommendations, such as mammography and physical exams, and recommendations for life style changes for possible prevention.

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