NOTE: Since its discovery in 1995, this type of hereditary cancer has changed from one type of cancer, caused by mutations in only one gene to several types of cancer, caused by mutations in any of many different genes. As a result, all labels used to describe this syndrome, such as ''breast cancer gene'', ''BRCA'', ''hereditary breast and ovarian cancer'' and ''HBOC'' tell only part of the story, leaving out well over half of those who are affected. To better serve our patient group, we are in the process of changing our name and updating all resources to reflect the fully inclusive and future forward RISKY GENES™ brand. We ask for your patience during this process.
My name is Mary. I am a breast cancer survivor after being diagnosed at 41. I am a daughter of a mother, who lost her life to ovarian cancer when she was 55. I am a mother who lost my daughter to breast cancer when she was 34. And a mother who supported a second daughter through a preventative double-mastectomy when she was only 24 and is facing ovary/fallopian tube removal in her early thirties. I am a grandmother helping my granddaughter to navigate the world without her mother and I fear for her future. READ MORE
My name is Trisha. My story is a long one, but thankfully, it has a happy ending for me. Breast and Ovarian Cancer had always run strong in my family, with a long list of second cousins, great aunts, and my great grandmother all passing away from breast or ovarian cancer. As a teen I chose to ignore this but by 25 I was forced to face its reality when my mother was diagnosed with stage 2B breast cancer at the age of 45. At this time my sister was 17 and my brother only 6 years old. During my mom’s 16 rounds of chemotherapy, READ MORE
My name is Janine , and I am 24 years old. It is springtime in Edmonton, Alberta. The days are getting warmer, the grass is getting greener, the sun is staying out later, and so are my friends. Most girls my age are taking in spring right now, they are out for jogs, they are wearing smaller clothing, and they are out late with a drink in hand. I, however, am in bed recovering from surgery, this is my second surgery in 6 months. I have the BRCA 1 gene mutation, and this make me different than most of the other 24 year old girls I know. READ MORE
Lianne Hanson knew she carried a BRCA1 mutation and, although an active advocate for genetic testing, she didn't think cancer would happen to her. She put off risk reducing surgery to have a second child and was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 31, when her baby was eight months old.
Whether or not one decides to go the surgery route is highly personal, but Lianne wanted to get the word out that putting one's head in the sand is not a good option. Lianne lost her battle with hereditary breast cancer when she was 34 years old.