As we learn more about cancer, we learn more about how the genes we inherit from our parents can place us at increased risk for various types of cancer. When cancer is diagnosed, it is important to consider whether family members are at risk, too. Genetic counselors at the Hollings Cancer Center are masters-level trained and certified through the American Board of Genetic Counseling, ensuring qualified, professional care.
The genetic counselors at MUSC Hollings Cancer Center offer consultations to individuals who have cancer, individuals who had cancer but are in remission, and individuals with a family member previously diagnosed with cancer.
Genetic testing generally involves drawing a blood sample to look for changes in a person’s genes that may indicate an increased risk for cancer. For those with a cancer diagnosis, genetic testing may also be helpful in personalizing cancer screening recommendations.
Please complete the online family history questionnaire before scheduling your appointment.
To best assess your risks, we need accurate family history information. It may be helpful to contact extended relatives to verify any details that you may not know about. It is important to list all relatives, those with and without cancer. The more detailed the family history, the more accurate the risk assessment and screening recommendations.
Our goal is to empower you to make the best informed decision regarding screening and preventative care. If you or anyone in your family has already completed genetic testing, it is helpful to forward a copy of those results before your scheduled appointment. If available, any relevant medical records (pathology reports, oncology reports and/or colonoscopy reports) would be helpful to bring.
The first visit usually takes one to two hours. A second visit may be indicated to discuss results of genetic tests or review additional personal and family history information.
Your genetic counselor will review the following:
Genetic testing is not required for a cancer risk assessment. Genetic testing is a personal choice, and it may not necessarily be useful for everyone who receives genetic counseling. We can refer you to appropriate medical specialties and community resources. We are here to support your decisions in the context of your personal values, beliefs and goals.
For all patients wishing to meet with a genetic counselor, we require a physician or primary care provider (PCP) referral. Once you have completed the questionnaire, please call 843-792-9300 to schedule your appointment.
Patient Referrals: Please have the patient complete the online family history questionnaire or provide the patient’s email so that we can send them the questionnaire. Referrals and pertinent medical records can be faxed to 843-792-1190. Physician referrals for cancer genetic consultation can be made online or by calling MEDULINE at 843-792-2200.
Personalized patient care is at the center of everything we do. And no one tells the story better than our patients themselves. Meet some of our patients and hear about their cancer journey.
At Hollings, we are working to reduce the cancer burden across South Carolina through cancer prevention and education programs, statewide partnerships, and a focus on reaching underserved populations through a variety of programs.Prevention & Early Detection
Visit the MUSC Health Blog for expert advice on living a healthier lifestyle, learn how MUSC is involved in Charleston community events and hear personal stories from our patients.