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Cancer predisposition means some people have an increased chance of developing cancer because of a genetic condition. Sometimes individuals are the first one in the family to have the genetic condition, while other times they inherited it from one or both parents.
Currently, it is believed that about 8-10 percent of childhood cancer cases are caused by an underlying genetic condition. And just because someone has a genetic condition does not mean he or she will develop cancer.
If the cancer is caused by an underlying genetic condition, that’s important because it means:
Genetic testing could be considered for
First, gather your family’s medical history, especially for your parents, children, sisters, brothers, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and first cousins, particularly anyone who has had cancer.
If you learn that there is a history of cancer in your family, discuss this information with your physician and perhaps seek the guidance of a genetic counselor or other genetics professional.
Reviewed: June 2018