Do You Have Predisposition to Get Cancer? Is Cancer Hereditary?

The majority of the world population often asks: is cancer hereditary? If my mother or father suffered from cancer, will I get it too?

Before we explain anything on this subject, we should clarify and we should all know that cancer has a genetic component. But if it’s genetic it doesn’t mean that it is “hereditary” too.

Currently, this modern disease is so common that most of us almost certainly have a relative or close person who is sick. Some experts say that there are certain types of cancer that seem to be more common within some families.

The uses of tobacco products or obesity across many generations are surely factors that can determine your potential risk.

On the other hand, we know that there are different types of cancer that are more likely to be inherited through your family tree.

Still, we should mention once again that we’re dealing with a disease that has a genetic component, but it’s not necessarily hereditary.

Is Cancer hereditary and its genetic inheritance

The University of Salamanca published one report in 2010 – “Genetic Counseling: A Guide to Preventing Hereditary Cancer.”

The report aimed to discern if a genetic analysis could determine whether a person is a DNA sequence carrier. If so, could that make them more “susceptible” to developing cancer?

Generally, the probability that you’ll “gain” certain oncological diseases from your family is very low ( between 5 – 10%). These cancers usually have no known environmental factors.

family members

Cancer occurs due to a complex combination of factors. It is a genetic disease.  It originates in certain genes, whether it’s caused by internal or external factors. Those genes alter and mutate until the cells proliferate.

Things that are associated with your lifestyle can aggravate these genetic variations . The environment where we live every day can also be a trigger.

At the same time, it’s most commonly a subtle combination of everything. But developing a tumor due to hereditary factors is very low.

Environmental pollutants, tobacco use and unhealthy habits pose a greater danger.

When can you determine that you have a cancer hereditary predisposition?

Because the beginning of cancer is usually due to a combination of various factors, it’s important to consider several aspects.

  • When the same type of cancer appears among several different family members.
  • When that cancer affects different generations: grandparents, children, grandchildren.
  • The diagnosis occurs in some family members at a young age (before 60).

Cancers with a hereditary component

There are certain types of cancer that have a hereditary component. The risk factor remains at the 5 – 10%.

This isn’t very high, but you need to be very attentive and inform your doctor so you can get the appropriate evaluations.

Is there a test that can determine whether or not you will develop these types of cancer?

There are few tests that can give you some indications or information about your risk. However, we should clarify some key issues first:

  • These genetic tests won’t tell you whether or not you’ll develop a hereditary type of cance They can only “tell” you how likely it will be.
  • The first thing you should do is talk to your doctor. Later they refer you to what’s known as the unit for cancer genetic counseling.
  • Its function is to study cancer hereditary forms and to counsel you. It’s not only about receiving the result of a laboratory test.
  • It also exists to advise you: here you will evaluate your personal and family risk. You will also learn what monitoring strategies you should implement and how to reduce your risk.

We should underline again that the risk of developing cancer due to hereditary factors is very low.

cancer cells

But this is definitely a common terror or fear among the worlds’ population. So, the question is:

How can you prevent cancer?

As we said before, the most important thing is to receive sound medical advice. If several women in your family have had breast cancer, for example, the most important thing is that you have regular breast exams and mammograms.

At the same time, remember that the genetic component itself is not what usually causes the disease to develop. Cancer usually appears thanks to other factors that increase your risk and susceptibility.

  • It’s very important to avoid tobacco use.
  • Obesity or being overweight is another big risk factor.
  • A diet rich in sugar and fat is another danger you should avoid.
  • Be active! Don’t lead a sedentary lifestyle.
  • Another risk is living in an unhealthy environment or working in contaminant


Source: StepToHealth


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