We provide supportive connections and essential information about specialized services and resources
Since 2002, the HBOC Society has devoted its energy to passionately serving those directly and indirectly affected by hereditary breast and ovarian cancer (HBOC) syndrome,
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Learning one has risky genes can be an extremely traumatic experience. People living in affected families have often lost parents, siblings, children and/or other close relatives and live in constant fear of being next. It's hard to take the step to confirm whether you have inherited risky genes and even harder to make the difficult choices required to protect yourself in the case of a positive genetic test result. We are here to help with timely information, helpful resources and supportive connections.
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WHAT IS HBOC SYNDROME?
WHO IS AFFECTED?
Hereditary breast and ovarian cancer (HBOC) syndrome is caused by one or more of a number of inherited gene mutations that results in a high risk of breast, ovarian and prostate cancer, and slightly higher risk of some other types of cancer. This condition is often referred to as the 'breast cancer gene, being 'high risk', 'hereditary' or as having 'risky genes'. Hereditary cancer tends to be diagnosed often and at young ages in affected families. Risky genes can be carried by both males and females and pass to children at a rate of 50%.
About 10% of all breast and prostate cancer and at least 15% of all ovarian cancer is known to be hereditary. This translates to up to 1/2 million Canadians who have or will develop hereditary breast, ovarian or prostate cancer. Not all risky gene carriers will develop cancer and some will develop a related cancer. Taking this into account, about 1 million Canadians are estimated to carry risky genes. Unfortunately, awareness remains so low that an estimated 80% do not yet know of their elevated cancer risk, so can't make informed decisions about their health.
Nothing can make your own journey seem less daunting than by helping others in the same situation. There are so many ways to get involved, ranging from simply leaving us your name as a supporter of the cause, to volunteering for events or joining a working committee. If we don't support our own cause, who will?