Many women were awakened by Angelina Jolie’s preventive mastectomy in order to reduce the risk of breast cancer. What led her to this decision and which test literally saved her life? Is this test available in Greece and how much does it cost?
For the women who belong to the high-risk group, a simple blood test is carried out and its analysis shows whether a woman has a specific gene that predisposes to breast cancer. The test detects whether a woman is a BRCA1 and BRCA2 carrier.
This specific blood test is done at the Democritus research center. It can also be carried out by a private mastologist. In this case, the test is analyzed by an authorized private company and the results are sent to the doctor.
The cost for the first family member ranges from 2,500 to 3,000 euros. There’s also another test which does not require a blood sample, but saliva, at a much lower price (200-300 euros) which does not detect the high-risk genes 100%, but approximately 70%. Before a patient takes this test, she is informed by her doctor that it is not as effective as the blood test.
The test is appropriate for women who have a strong family history, for example a relative (first or second degree) who had breast cancer at a young age.
The case of Angelina Jolie who lost her mother to breast cancer at the age of 56 is typical. For this reason Jolie regularly practiced self examination and palpation of her breast every month.