Women with womb cancer are to be offered a genetic test for Lynch syndrome

Oct 2020 -UK

Women with Lynch syndrome are likely to develop womb cancer before showing signs of bowel cancer. A diagnosis of the genetic condition means they can be offered regular checks, and aspirin therapy, to reduce their risk of bowel cancer.

Researchers found that, of 305 UK women offered testing for Lynch syndrome around the time of their treatment for womb cancer, 302 accepted.

Women’s family members can also be offered testing. The researchers found that protecting family members was the main reason why women wanted to be tested. They were most receptive at follow-up appointments after surgery for their womb cancer.

A Beginner’s guide to Lynch Syndrome

This information booklet provides answers to some of the many questions you may have, following the news that you carry a gene mutation which causes Lynch syndrome.

One of the challenges that people with Lynch syndrome face is coping with the uncertainty of what the future holds, both for you and your family.

Unlike other health-related issues, there is an extra set of challenges for people with Lynch syndrome – the risks for your relatives.

This guide will be useful in providing you with some of the information you need and also help you to think about questions you may wish to discuss with your family and the genetics department.

HPV vaccine catch-up programme

This month eligible people who are aged 16 and older can register to receive a HPV vaccine. From early 2023, the programme will be open to all eligible people.

Initial vaccination clinics will being on Monday 12th December with additional clinics being added throughout 2023.

Students in their first year of secondary school are offered the HPV vaccine as part of the school vaccination programme.

HPV infection can cause cancer of the:

  • cervix
  • vulva (the area surrounding the opening of the vagina)
  • vagina
  • anus
  • oropharynx (the part of the throat at the back of the mouth)
  • penis

HPV infection can also cause genital warts in both girls and boys. The World Health Organization (WHO) states that the HPV vaccine is extremely safe. If you have questions about the HPV vaccine, talk to a trusted health professional like your GP

Bringing you mindfulness

Self-compassion is good for you. That’s a fact. Across a whole range of areas,

including anxiety, depression, relationships, motivation and making healthy choices, self-compassion has been found to have positive and really healtheffects.  (from my book Kindfulness).

Try: Next time you are criticising yourself, take the point of view of a good friend rather than a harsh critic.

The quite short guide to mindfulness:

Kirstie Alley’s Cause Of Death Explained

Kirstie Alley, best known for her Emmy award-winning role as Rebecca Howe on “Cheers,” died Monday night of colon cancer (via People). She was 71.

Her children, True and Lillie Parker, said in a statement on Twitter that her cancer diagnosis was “recently discovered” and that her closest family members were with her. She was receiving treatment at the Moffitt Cancer Center.

Read More:

According to the American Cancer Society, colon cancer might not have symptoms at first, and one could be symptom-free before finding out the cancer has spread.

For those with a genetic predisposition, like Lynch Syndrome, it can spread faster and occur at younger ages (per Fight Colorectal Cancer). Doctors recommend regular colon cancer screenings at age of 45 for anyone with an average risk and even younger for those with a genetic risk factor.

Read More:

Urine test can detect cancers in Lynch Syndrome patients

“People with Lynch Syndrome can benefit from screening programmes that enable cancers to be found at an early stage when they can be cured “

Patients with LS are at high risk of bowel and endometrial cancers. The risk of urothelial cancer is less well recognised, with a lifetime risk of up to 28.5%, depending on which gene is involved.

This means that those LS patients who have an underlying defect in the MSH2 gene are more than 10 times as likely to get a potentially curable cancer in their urinary tract than the general population.

Failure to screen for these cancers means that even after being diagnosed with the condition, one in 20 LS patients will die of urothelial cancer, often at a young age.

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