Beyond complications for your health, a genetic disorder such as Lynch syndrome may be cause for other concerns. A genetic counselor is trained to help you navigate the areas of your life that may be affected by your diagnosis, such as:
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- Your privacy. The results of your genetic test will be listed in your medical record, which may be accessed by insurance companies and employers. You may worry that being diagnosed with Lynch syndrome will make it difficult to change jobs or health insurance providers in the future. Federal laws protect Americans from discrimination. A genetic counselor can explain legal protections.
- Your children. If you have Lynch syndrome, your children have a risk of inheriting your genetic mutations. If one parent carries a genetic mutation for Lynch syndrome, each child has a 50 percent chance of inheriting that mutation.
- Your extended family. A Lynch syndrome diagnosis has implications for your entire family. You may worry about the best way to tell family members that you're having genetic testing. A genetic counselor can guide you through this process.
- Genetics of colorectal cancer (PDQ). National Cancer Institute. http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/genetics/colorectal/healthprofessional. Accessed Feb. 17, 2015.
- Lindor NM, et al. Concise handbook of familial cancer susceptibility syndromes. Journal of the National Cancer Institute Monographs. 2008;38:1.
- Genetic/familial high-risk assessment: Colorectal. Fort Washington, Pa.: National Comprehensive Cancer Network. http://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/f_guidelines.asp. Accessed Feb. 17, 2015.
- Lindor NM, et al. Recommendations for the care of individuals with an inherited predisposition to Lynch syndrome: A systematic review. Journal of the American Medical Association. 2006;296:1507.
- Giardiello FM, et al. Guidelines on genetic evaluation and management of Lynch syndrome: A consensus statement by the U.S. Multi-Society Task Force on Colorectal Cancer. Gastroenterology. 2014;147:502.
- Syngal S, et al. ACG clinical guideline: Genetic testing and management of hereditary gastrointestinal cancer syndromes. American Journal of Gastroenterology. 2015;110:223.
- AskMayoExpert. Lynch syndrome. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2014.
- Making sense of your genes: A guide to genetic counseling. Genetic Alliance. http://www.geneticalliance.org/publications/guidetogeneticcounseling. Accessed Feb. 17, 2015.
- Lynch HT, et al. Milestones of Lynch syndrome: 1895-2015. Nature Reviews Cancer. http://www.nature.com/nrc/journal/vaop/ncurrent/abs/nrc3878.html. Accessed Feb. 17, 2015.
- Thibodeau SN, et al. Microsatellite instability in cancer of the proximal colon. Science. 1993;260:816.
- Vasen HF, et al. Revised guidelines for the clinical management of Lynch syndrome (HNPCC): Recommendations by a group of European experts. Gut. 2013; 62:812.
- Burn J, et al. Long-term effect of aspirin on cancer risk in carriers of hereditary colorectal cancer: An analysis from the CAPP2 randomised controlled trial. The Lancet. 2011;378:2081.
- Lindor NM. Lynch syndrome 101 (years, that is). American Society of Clinical Oncology. http://meetinglibrary.asco.org/content/114000027-144. Accessed Feb. 20, 2015.
- Lindor NM (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Phoenix/Scottsdale, Ariz. Feb. 19, 2015.
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