Updating family medical history
New York (ABC/WSYR-TV) - New research shows it's particularly important for families with a history of cancer to keep their medical histories current. That's because one of the most important factors in rating a person's cancer risk is a family history of the disease.
A study published in the "Journal of the American Medical Association" identifies periods in life when family cancer history is most likely to change and in turn change an individual's own cancer risk, calling for earlier or more intensive screening.
The authors reviewed family data from over 15,000 participants in a U.S. national registry for cancer patients. They found substantial changes in family history of colorectal cancer breast cancer and prostate cancer between the ages of thirty and fifty.
So, the percentage of those advised to get increased cancer screening increases during that age bracket.
The authors recommend that a patient's family history of cancer be updated at least every five to ten years.
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