“My mission is to use the power of social media to impact as many breast cancer patient’s lives so that they are made aware of the best options available for screening, diagnosis, treatment, and, ultimately, prevention.”
“I am completely aligned with the mission of Learn Look Locate to help educate and inform people regarding all the options available for breast cancer treatment: one size fits one.” It is extremely important that we give patients the opportunity to be heard and connect with other survivors going through treatment to feel emotionally understood and informed.”
– Barry Rosen, MD Breast Surgical Oncologist
Dr. Rosen is a breast surgical oncologist in the northwest suburbs of Chicago, where he has been in practice for over 25 years. Simultaneously, he has worked as Chief Medical Officer for hospitals and industry and is currently a medical director at Aptitude Health.
Ask Dr. Rosen
Who is a candidate for genetic testing?
I think the short answer is “everyone”. Imagine if we could give every breast cancer patient the power to prevent breast cancer in a loved-one—this is precisely what genetic testing can offer for every breast cancer patient. Approximately 10% of all women with breast cancer will test positive for a mutation linked to breast cancer. Their 1st-degree relatives have a 50% chance of having that very same mutation; by offering ‘cascade’ testing to their relatives, we can then potentially prevent their cancer or, at the very least, find it at its earliest stages. Moreover, finding this mutation may impact surveillance and/or treatment options for all newly-diagnosed women. Historically, cost has been a major deterrent; however, the test is now covered by insurance for most cancer patients, and, if it isn’t, it can be done for ~$250. If you were tested in the past for a BRCA mutation, please return for MULTI-PANEL GENETIC TESTING—we have discovered many more mutations other than BRCA associated with breast cancer. Many women fear discrimination if ‘labeled’ with a mutation. There is a national law (GINA Act, 2008) that protects people with mutations from being denied medical coverage. While obtaining life insurance may be more difficult, I would choose ‘life’ over ‘life insurance’ any day. In short, please ‘pay it forward’ and get tested if you or a close relative have had breast cancer.