Mercy’s Dr. Gauri Bedi Of The Hoffberger Breast Center Discusses Brca 1 & 2 Gene Mutation And Breast Cancer Risk

October 17, 2016
Mercy Breast Center

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that about one in every 500 women in the country carries the BRCA gene mutation, which can lead to breast cancer.

But how risky is the BRCA mutation? And how do you know if you should be tested for it?

Sisters Kristie Demaso and Jill Lewandowski enjoy their share of laughs, but they also share something serious: the BRCA2 gene mutation.

According to Dr. Gauri Bedi, Associate Director of The Hoffberger Breast Center at Mercy, both the BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene mutations greatly increase the risk not just for breast cancer but also ovarian cancer.

“If somebody has a BRCA1 gene mutation, there is somewhere between a 60 to 90 percent lifetime risk of developing breast cancer, and anywhere from 40 to 60 percent risk of developing ovarian cancer,” Dr. Bedi said.

“With the BRCA2 gene mutation, the risk for breast cancer is a little bit less than that, probably about 60 percent, and the risk of ovarian cancer is about 20 percent. And that's compared to an average; (in) the average population, the risk of ovarian cancer is just over 1 percent," Dr. Bedi added.

Genetic testing revealed Demaso's and Lewandowski’s BRCA2 mutation, so they both had hysterectomies and both breasts removed. The gene mutation came from their father’s side of the family, and their brother has it too.

Testing is advisable on anyone under the age of 45 who has had breast cancer, if you have a male relative with breast cancer or a family history of more than one relative with pancreatic, breast or ovarian cancer.

“The better the family history that you gather, the more likely it is that you get the appropriate test,” Dr. Bedi said. “And a lot of times people don't realize it's not just your first-degree relatives, it's also your second- and third-degree relatives. And patients tend to not realize that it's the paternal side of the family that's as important as the maternal.”

View Dr. Gauri Bedi of The Hoffberger Breast Center’s interview regarding BRCA 1 & 2 gene mutation and breast cancer.

Dan Collins - Senior Director of Media Relations at Mercy Medical Center

Dan Collins, Senior Director of Media Relations

Email: Office: 410-332-9714 Cell: 410-375-7342

About Mercy

Founded in 1874 in downtown Baltimore by the Sisters of Mercy, Mercy Medical Center is a 183-licensed bed acute care university-affiliated teaching hospital. Mercy has been recognized as a top Maryland hospital by U.S. News & World Report; a Top 100 hospital for Women’s Health & Orthopedics by Healthgrades; is currently A-rated for Hospital Safety (Leapfrog Group), and is recognized by the American Nurses Credentialing Center as a Magnet Hospital. Mercy Medical Center is part of Mercy Health Services (MHS), the parent of Mercy’s primary care and specialty care physician enterprise, known as Mercy Personal Physicians, which employs more than 200 providers with locations in Baltimore, Lutherville, Overlea, Glen Burnie, Columbia and Reisterstown. For more information about Mercy, visit, MDMercyMedia on FacebookTwitter, or call 1-800-MD-Mercy.

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