Testing for Cancer Doubled in Britain since Angelina Jolie underwent a double mastectomy

Testing for Cancer Doubled in Britain since Angelina Jolie underwent a double mastectomy | PakistanTribe.comLONDON – A new study published in the Breast Cancer Research Journal has revealed that referrals for genetic testing for the disease have doubled in Britain since Angelina Jolie underwent a double mastectomy in May last year, reported Glamour Magazine.

Earlier, Angelina had announced that she tested positive for a BRCA1 gene mutation, which is inherited from a parent, and is the cause of at least 10% of breast cancers. Women with the BRCA1 gene mutation have between 45% and 90% risk of developing breast cancer in their lifetime.

Angelina Jolie’s statement has inspired many women with a history of breast cancer in the family to approach their GP with concerns about the gene mutation – and Breast Cancer Research Journal calling it “The Angelina Jolie Effect”.

Researchers believe that it’s Jolie’s glamorous image that reassured women about losing their sexual identity after under-taking the preventative surgery.

While news stories about breast cancer do usually have a short-term effect on awareness and referrals, Gareth Evans, professor of clinical genetics at Genesis Breast Cancer Prevention, wanted to find out if Jolie’s announcement would have a longer-lasting effect.

And it certainly did: after assessing data from 12 family history clinics and 9 regional genetic centres in the UK, researchers found that there was a two and a half-fold increase in referrals by GPs for June and July 2013 immediately after the actress’ announcement, compared to the same two months in 2012. The rise in referrals continued from August-October.

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