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What is an Appointment Like with a Genetic Counselor

What information is provided during your appointment is dependent on what you want to know.  We will be prepared to review your medical and family history as well as provide information on the genetic factors that may be contributing to the medical or psychological concerns in the family.  In some cases genetic testing and/or preventative or management guidelines may be available. 

In order to do this, it can be helpful to compiling a list of family members that includes each person’s current age, any significant medical or psychological concerns, and if deceased what was their age and cause of death.  Please attempt, if possible, to gain information on at least your parents, siblings, children, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, grandparents, and cousins. We understand that this is not always possible and will still be able to have an informative discussion if detailed family history is not available. 

For those individuals with a personal or family history of cancer, it may be helpful to obtain medical records such as doctors’ notes and pathology reports (laboratory test results from biopsies, surgeries, or screening examinations, such as colonoscopies), any genetic testing, and detailed information about the age of diagnosis, type of cancers if present for family members as well.

We will also provide support and resources to help cope with medical or psychological concerns you are facing.  Most genetic counseling appointments will last for approximately one hour to address your unique needs.