open access

Vol 15, No 4 (2018)
Review paper
Published online: 2018-11-27
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Components of the psychosocial functioning of carriers of BRCA1 and/or BRCA2 gene mutations

Sylwia Michałowska, Agnieszka Samochowiec, Anna Jakubowska
Psychiatria 2018;15(4):234-240.

open access

Vol 15, No 4 (2018)
Prace poglądowe - nadesłane
Published online: 2018-11-27

Abstract

Anxiety or relief and a chance to reduce risk? How does the genetic test result affect the psychosocial functioning of patients? In recent years, genetic tests perform to determine the risk of malignant tumors are becoming more and more popular. This applies in particular to the risk assessment for hereditary ovarian cancer and breast cancer. It is already know that the mutation in the BRCA1 (breast cancer 1) and BRCA2 (breast cancer 2) gene significantly increases the chance of developing breast cancer or ovarian cancer. Research indicates that the risk of falling ill depends on the type of mutation and the location of the mutation in the gene [1]. Psychologists involved to check the functioning of women undergoing genetic research, seek answers to the question about the impact of the outcome on their daily life - the level of anxiety, quality of life and depressive symptoms. This article is an analysis of the results obtained by contemporary researchers of the phenomenon. The results obtained so far do not allow for an absolute determination whether the positive result of the genetic test is unequivocally associated with experiencing anxiety or a lowered mood. Future research seems to be important to be able to plan therapeutic interactions more effectively with women for whom the diagnosis becomes overloading and exceeds their ability to cope, but also in the perspective of providing adequate psychological support to women who will deciding what to do with further preventive measures, especially with the decision to perform preventive mastectomy.

Abstract

Anxiety or relief and a chance to reduce risk? How does the genetic test result affect the psychosocial functioning of patients? In recent years, genetic tests perform to determine the risk of malignant tumors are becoming more and more popular. This applies in particular to the risk assessment for hereditary ovarian cancer and breast cancer. It is already know that the mutation in the BRCA1 (breast cancer 1) and BRCA2 (breast cancer 2) gene significantly increases the chance of developing breast cancer or ovarian cancer. Research indicates that the risk of falling ill depends on the type of mutation and the location of the mutation in the gene [1]. Psychologists involved to check the functioning of women undergoing genetic research, seek answers to the question about the impact of the outcome on their daily life - the level of anxiety, quality of life and depressive symptoms. This article is an analysis of the results obtained by contemporary researchers of the phenomenon. The results obtained so far do not allow for an absolute determination whether the positive result of the genetic test is unequivocally associated with experiencing anxiety or a lowered mood. Future research seems to be important to be able to plan therapeutic interactions more effectively with women for whom the diagnosis becomes overloading and exceeds their ability to cope, but also in the perspective of providing adequate psychological support to women who will deciding what to do with further preventive measures, especially with the decision to perform preventive mastectomy.
Get Citation

Keywords

BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene mutations, psychological functioning, anxiety, depression, preventive mastectomy, breast cancer, ovarian cancer

About this article
Title

Components of the psychosocial functioning of carriers of BRCA1 and/or BRCA2 gene mutations

Journal

Psychiatria (Psychiatry)

Issue

Vol 15, No 4 (2018)

Article type

Review paper

Pages

234-240

Published online

2018-11-27

Bibliographic record

Psychiatria 2018;15(4):234-240.

Keywords

BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene mutations
psychological functioning
anxiety
depression
preventive mastectomy
breast cancer
ovarian cancer

Authors

Sylwia Michałowska
Agnieszka Samochowiec
Anna Jakubowska

References (19)
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