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Understanding Lynch Syndrome Printer Friendly Version Printer Friendly Version Share

Lynch Syndrome is a hereditary disorder in which affected individuals have a greater chance of developing colorectal, endometrial, and other types of cancers – often at a young age. Lynch Syndrome is also called hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancer (HNPCC). It’s a serious condition – and if you’ve been diagnosed with colon or endometrial cancer – you should seek the advice of a certified genetic counselor to determine whether you or your family members are at risk.

Risk Chart

1ST LINE OF DEFENSE – Assessing Your Family History
Lynch Syndrome has no gender, ethnicity or cultural preference. It targets families.

  • If you have the gene mutation that causes Lynch: your parents, children, and your brothers and sisters have up to a 50% chance of having the same mutation.
  • If you have Lynch Syndrome, another 3 family members on average will have it.

You or a relative could be at risk for Lynch Syndrome if:

  • You or your relative was diagnosed with colorectal or uterine cancer before age 50.
  • You or your relative has had two or more Lynch Syndrome cancers (colon, uterine, ovary, stomach, small intestine, pancreas, ureter, kidney or brain cancers).
  • You’ve had an abnormal IHC screening test.

2ND LINE OF DEFENSE - Diagnostic Testing
Sarasota Memorial Health Care System provides the only certified genetic counselor specializing in oncology between Tampa and Naples. We will ensure the best, most cost-effective testing for you, based on your personal family history. Most insurance covers this testing.

If you have been diagnosed with colon or endometrial cancer, or if you’re concerned about Lynch Syndrome, ask your physician to refer you to Sarasota Memorial’s Genetic Counselor, who will help arrange the right genetic testing for you and discuss your results in a one-on-one meeting. Here, you can learn the best options and next steps for you and your family.

3RD LINE OF DEFENSE - Regular Surveillance
Once Lynch Syndrome has been diagnosed, your physician will work with you on an essential screening and medical management program that can protect your health and even save your life or the life of your family member. Routine surveillance and screenings can reveal tumors that can be treated or removed before becoming life-threatening.

If you have questions about your family’s risks for Lynch Syndrome or any of the other known hereditary cancer syndromes, please call (941) 917-2005.

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