New infographic details genetic cancer link

Bowel Cancer Australia

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Bowel Cancer Australia has released a new infographic highlighting the most common genetic causes of bowel cancer, to coincide with the annual Christmas in July campaign. 
The campaign acknowledges that around 25 per cent of patients have a family history or genetic inheritance, both of which significantly increase a person’s risk of developing bowel cancer.

Bowel Cancer Australia Community Engagement Manager Claire Annear said the release of the infographic “Is Bowel Cancer in Your Genes?” serves as a timely reminder to talk to loved ones about family history and genetic risk factors.

“An estimated 900 Australians diagnosed with bowel cancer each year will have an underlying genetic cause, yet some don’t realise it.”

“That's why we’re encouraging Australians to get together with their loved ones for Christmas in July – share a festive meal, have a chat about their family health history and raise much needed funds for Bowel Cancer Australia.”

In families where there is a clear history of a genetic risk factor, screening is recommended from an earlier age than the general population.

On the other hand, anyone who is diagnosed with bowel cancer under the age of 50 could be harbouring a genetic inheritance without knowing it, and should also consider speaking to their doctor about genetic screening.
The most common genetic causes of bowel cancer are Lynch Syndrome and Familial Adenomatous Polyposis (FAP).

Lynch Syndrome is caused by a change in a gene that normally functions to protect a person from getting cancer.

FAP is characterised by the presence of hundreds to thousands of adenomatous polyps in the large bowel of affected individuals, which often start in adolescence.

If left untreated, the risk of developing bowel cancer in Lynch patients is 70-90 per cent, while the risk in FAP patients is almost 100 per cent.

The infographic is available for download at 'Is Bowel Cancer In Your Genes? Factsheet'.

To get involved in the Christmas in July campaign, visit https://www.bowelcanceraustralia.org/christmas-in-july

Find out more about family history and genetic inheritance risk factors.

Contact Bowel Cancer Australia's Advisory Services team to talk with a Nurse Advisor about bowel cancer and family history or genetic inheritance.


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