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Genet Med. 2007 Aug;9(8):487-95.

Randomized comparison of phone versus in-person BRCA1/2 predisposition genetic test result disclosure counseling.

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National Institutes of Health, National Human Genome Research, Bethesda, Maryland, USA.



This study evaluated whether phone results were equivalent to in-person result disclosure for individuals undergoing BRCA1/2 predisposition genetic testing.


A total of 111 of 136 subjects undergoing education and counseling for BRCA1/2 predisposition genetic testing agreed to randomization to phone or in-person result disclosure. Content and format for both sessions were standardized. Data from the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory and the Psychological General Well-Being index were collected at baseline and then again at 1 week and 3 months after disclosure of test results. Baseline measures were administered after the following had occurred: counseling/education session had been conducted, informed consent had been obtained, and decision to be tested had been made. Satisfaction and cost assessments were administered after the result session. At 1 week, participants were asked their preferred method of result disclosure.


There were no differences in anxiety and general well-being measures between 50 phone and 52 in-person results disclosure. Both groups reported similar rates of satisfaction with services. Among those with a preference, 77% preferred the notification method assigned. There was a statistically significant preference for phone results among the 23% who did not prefer the method assigned. Greater costs were associated with in-person result disclosure.


These data suggest that phone results are a reasonable alternative to traditional in-person BRCA1/2 genetic test disclosure without any negative psychologic outcomes or compromise in knowledge. However, further study is needed in a more clinically representative population to confirm these findings.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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