Newsletter Fall 2021

Modifying Risks in BRCA Carriers

Breast cancer risks: A risk-reducing salpingo-oophorectomy (i.e., removal of both ovaries and fallopian tubes) in BRCA carriers was associated with a reduced risk of breast cancer within five years after surgery, with evidence of longer-term risk reduction among those with BRCA1 variants.1

Ovarian cancer risks: A new study reported that the use of oral contraceptives reduced ovarian cancer risk in BRCA carriers,2 with less frequent oral contraceptive use reported among carriers who were diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Specifically, 58.6% of BRCA1 and 53.5% of BRCA2 carriers who were diagnosed with ovarian cancer had ever used oral contraceptives, as compared to 88.9% and 80.7% of BRCA1 and BRCA2 carriers, respectively, who were not diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Additionally, those who developed ovarian cancer had used oral contraceptives for a shorter duration (median of 7 years) compared to those who did not develop ovarian cancer (median of 9 and 8 years for BRCA1 and BRCA2, respectively). 1Choi, et al. JAMA Oncol. 2021 Apr. PMID: 33630024. 2Schrijver, et al. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2021 Jul. PMID: 33493488.

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