Text Size A A

E-Mail to a Friend






secret  Click to Play Audio


BRCA Mutations and Breast Cancer

BRCA Mutations and Breast Cancer

Dr. Larissa Korde discusses BRCA mutations and breast cancer. There is a lot of focus on understanding genetic predispositions to breast cancer. Some red flags to possible inherited mutations include early onset of breast cancer in women less than age 40, bilateral breast cancer occurring on both sides, and both breast and ovarian cancers occurring in the same family. The most common gene mutations for breast cancer are BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations. While BRCA mutations are the cause of only 5-10% of breast cancers, women with these mutations have a risk as high as 50-85% of developing breast cancer, and 10-40% of developing ovarian cancer. Women found to have a BRCA mutation can undergo a more aggressive screening program to diagnose cancer at an earlier and more treatable stage, or can consider taking a more proactive approach including prophylactic mastectomy or oophorectomy to reduce their risk.

Related Videos

Breast Cancer Biology, Stages, and Types

Dr. Larissa Korde provides an overview of breast cancer biology, stages, and types. Breast cancer is the growth of abnormal cells in breast. The stages of development are hyperplasia, atypical hyperplasia, non-invasive cancer or carcinoma in situ, and finally invasive cancer. Dr. Korde explains the stages of breast cancer, ranging from Stage 0, a non-invasive cancer, to Stage 4, a cancer that has spread to other organs. Other factors that an oncologist will look at are the receptors that the cancer expresses. Two hormone receptors are estrogen and progesterone, which is treated with hormone therapy. Another receptor is HER2, which treated with HER2 targeted therapy. Triple Negative is a subtype of breast cancer that does not express any of the latter three receptors and is generally treated with chemotherapy. Inflammatory breast cancer is a rare, but aggressive cancer invading the skin tissue

Breast Cancer Risk Factors and Screening with Dr. Larissa Korde

Breast Cancer Risk Factors and Screening Breast cancer is the second most common type of cancer in women. Knowing your risk factors and getting screened early gives you a better chance for a cure. Age and family history are the two best indicators for risk of breast cancer that cannot be changed. Having a number of family members with breast cancer is also an indicator of genetically inherited types of breast cancer. The top 3 things that influence breast cancer risk that can be changed are diet, weight and physical activity.

Breast Cancer Program

This video provides an overview of the Breast Cancer Program at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. The clinicians at SCCA are specialists that focus only on breast cancer, and are teachers and researchers that often have access to new drugs and regimens not available in other programs. They work as a team in a multidisciplinary way, with input from surgeons, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, geneticists and plastic surgeons, to provide the best treatment recommendations for each patient.