Review Article

The Consequences of a BRCA Mutation in Women

Janice Famorca-Tran, RN, MS, AOCNP®, CBCN®, NP-C, and Gayle Roux, PhD, NP-C, FAAN

Texas Oncology, Houston, Texas, and Texas Woman’s University College of Nursing, Denton, Texas

Authors’ disclosures of potential conflicts of interest are found at the end of this article.

Janice Famorca-Tran, RN, MS, AOCNP®, CBCN®, NP-C, Texas Oncology, 925 Gessner Road, Suite 550, Houston, TX 77024. E-mail: janicetran@att.net


J Adv Pract Oncol 2015;6:194–208 | doi: 10.6004/jadpro.2015.6.3.2 | © 2015 Harborside Press®


  

ABSTRACT

Abstract

Approximately 5% to 10% of breast cancer cases and 11% to 18% of ovarian cancer cases are a result of a mutation in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes, known as hereditary breast and ovarian cancer (HBOC). An inherited mutation in either of these genes increases the probability of malignant transformation and cancer. This article provides a clinical overview of HBOC as well as risk-reduction measures that have the potential to decrease cancer development. The review of the literature highlights the psychological consequences, prophylactic measures, and potential postoperative complications. An examination of this public health issue increases our understanding of the challenges and decision-making processes faced by women with HBOC. Risk-reducing measures and effective strategies that can be implemented to assist these women and their families are discussed. Practice and research implications are outlined to improve health outcomes for these women. Patients’ rights as well as the costs associated with HBOC are also addressed.




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