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J Behav Med. 2005 Oct;28(5):467-79. Epub 2005 Sep 30.

To test or not to test? Moderators of the relationship between risk perceptions and interest in predictive genetic testing.

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Department of Psychology, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel.


The moderating effects of motivational factors (illness prevention vs. emotional reassurance), regulatory focus (health vs. illness orientations), and cancer anxiety on the relationship between risk perceptions and women's interest in predictive genetic testing for breast cancer were studied among 102 women with no history of breast cancer. Risk perceptions per se were unrelated to testing interests. Perceptions of higher personal risk for developing breast cancer were positively related to women's interest in testing only among women whose dominant motivation was not emotional reassurance, who were not oriented towards ruling-out disease, and who were not highly anxious about breast cancer. These findings pointed to conditions under which risk perceptions may enhance screening behaviors, and other conditions under which they may not.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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