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Am J Med Genet C Semin Med Genet. 2014 Mar;166C(1):24-33. doi: 10.1002/ajmg.c.31388. Epub 2014 Mar 10.

Implementing family health history risk stratification in primary care: impact of guideline criteria on populations and resource demand.


The Genomic Medicine Model aims to facilitate patient engagement, patient/provider education of genomics/personalized medicine, and uptake of risk-stratified evidence-based prevention guidelines using MeTree, a patient-facing family health history (FHH) collection and clinical decision support (CDS) program. Here we report the number of increased risk (above population-level risk) patients identified for breast/ovarian cancer, colon cancer, hereditary syndrome risk, and thrombosis; the prevalence of FHH elements triggering increased-risk status; and the resources needed to manage their risk.


hybrid implementation-effectiveness study of adults with upcoming well-visits in 2 primary care practices in Greensboro, NC.


1,184, mean age = 58.8, female = 58% (N = 694), non-white = 20% (N = 215). Increased Risk: 44% (N = 523).


genetic counseling = 26% (N = 308), breast MRI = 0.8% (N = 10), breast chemoprophylaxis = 5% (N = 58), early/frequent colonoscopies = 19% (N = 221), ovarian cancer screening referral = 1% (N = 14), thrombosis testing/counseling = 2.4% (N = 71). FHH elements: 8 FHH elements lead to 37.3% of the increased risk categorizations (by frequency): first-degree-relative (FDR) with polyps age ≥60 (7.1%, N = 85), three relatives with Lynch-related cancers (5.4%, N = 65), FDR with polyps age <60 (5.1%, N = 61), three relatives on same side of family with same cancer (4.9%, N = 59), Gail score ≥1.66% (4.9%, N = 58), two relatives with breast cancer (one ≤age 50) (4.1%, N = 49), one relative with breast cancer ≤age 40 (4.1%, N = 48), FDR with colon cancer age ≥60 (1.7%, N = 20). MeTree identifies a high percentage of individuals in the general primary care population needing non-routine risk management/prevention for the selected conditions. Implementing risk-stratification in primary care will likely increase demand for related-resources, particularly colon screening and GC. Understanding the prevalence of FHH elements helps predict resource needs and may aid in guideline development.


family history; health services; primary prevention; risk stratification

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