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Buddy Check 3

Buddy Check 3

 
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Buddy Check 3 - June (Lori Farmer)

Updated: Saturday, August 3 2013, 01:50 PM CDT
ESCAMBIA COUNTY   --  Angelina Jolie made her first public appearance yesterday since announcing her preemptive double mastectomy surgery last month.

Jolie attended a movie premier in London and told reporters she was happy her decision to write and talk about her experience has "opened the dialogue on women's health."
 
Jolie choose to have both breasts removed after testing positive for the breast cancer gene she also lost her mother and an aunt to the disease.
We checked in with a local genetics expert to see how Jolie's story is affecting or influencing other patients when it comes to getting tested for the breast cancer genes.

Lori Farmer is an Advanced Practice Nurse specializing in genetics.
(("Genetics is not talked about a lot so if we get a high powered celebrity like that and it puts it on the forefront, it gives us a chance to have a dialogue about it and I know at community events I've had multiple people say, "Hey, what did you think about the Angelina Jolie thing?"))
   
Farmer comes at the issue from three angles.  Professionally of course as a breast cancer survivor who also had a double mastectomy and a patient who was tested for the breast cancer genetic mutations -- thankfully she did not have them.
   
Farmer says she took away two main concerns from Jolie news coverage.
Number one -- Jolie's recovery from her double mastectomy and reconstruction reportedly was accomplished in record time.

(("I know in her case she did it in nine weeks.  For the average patient it takes almost a year."))
Farmer's own process took two years and twelve surgeries.

Farmer says she hopes Jolie's apparent rapid rebound won't send the idea to potential patients that everyone bounces back that fast.
   
Farmers second concern -- she says most reports left out the fact that certain men should consider breast cancer genetic testing...

Farmers says if a male's mother or father has been identified as a carrier of BRCA One or Two -- or if he develops breast cancer,  testing is in order.

(("I think the misnomer is because it's breast cancer it must be carried on the female chromosomes but because it's on the Chromosome 17 and Chromosome 13 we have all have two copies of each of those chromosomes, get one from our mom and one from our dad."))
   
Farmer says males who do test positive for BRCA One or Two -- have an increased risk of breast cancer -- up to eight percent chance. And an increased risk for prostate and pancreatic cancer.
   
Overall -- Farmer says the Jolie impact is positive.
She says she's not concerned about folks rushing out to get tests that are unnecessary for them.  Farmer says doctors and insurance requirements will limit that -- she says it starts a talk that may lead to information and ultimately, empowerment.

(("They want to protect their kids they want to protect their sisters and brothers and it gives them ammunition to go out and say all right, here's what I've tested positive for, now here's what we can do about it.  Lets do everything we can so you don't get cancer too."))
   
For more on local breast cancer information, head to our website, click on the Buddy Check 3 under the News tab.

Buddy Check 3 - June (Lori Farmer)


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