I recently wrote about how male breast cancer actually exists. During my rant, I mentioned that I was advised to get a gene test that could show if I had the mutation for breast cancer. I said the test was inconclusive and that I would discuss it another time.
Well, here we are.
First and foremost, this is not to convince someone not to get the testing. This is my own personal mind warring with itself on the best course of action. It has to do with me and me alone. That is my disclaimer.
A gene test exists that may be able to tell me if I have the marker for breast cancer. Here are my problems with it:
It’s inconclusive. My mom had one done and her test results say that it’s negative. But it’s not negative as in she doesn’t have the marker and won’t get breast cancer. She was diagnosed in 2001, and is currently in remission.
The negative means one of two things. 1) she doesn’t have the marker or 2) she has the marker but the test wasn’t able to detect it.
If I were to get the test done and it came back negative, there is a chance I will get breast cancer and there is a chance I won’t get breast cancer.
If the test is positive, there is a chance I will get breast cancer and there is a chance I won’t get breast cancer.
My mom had the test done in 2011. Not that long ago. Yes, I’m sure there have been advances in the technology, but there’s a website that states they still can’t find all the mutations. And the thing is, I have no idea what I would do if I received a positive test result.
A positive test result for some women means double mastectomy. Some women believe that to be the course of action. Each woman given the positive test result should consult with her doctor, and with herself, on what the best course of action is for her. I am not here to say one thing is better than the other. It is 100% up to what each woman feels is right for her.
I am undecided.
I feel as if I’m too young to have a mastectomy if I’m at a high risk. I also really don’t have the money to get decent breast augmentation if I had to get a double mastectomy. And yes, I would probably get augmentation as I like my breasts.
I don’t like ‘maybe’ as an answer when it comes to my health.
Cancer is scary and not knowing is scary, but in the case of the gene test, even with results, I still might not have a definite answer. I don’t like maybes when it comes to my health. My biggest worry is that I’ll get the test, get a negative and still be as uninformed as before. Seriously, that’s not acceptable.
I was diagnosed in 2006 with MS because I wouldn’t take “Oh, everything is fine” as an answer. What am I supposed to do with a test result that says, “We don’t know”?
In the case of a gene cancer test a negative is a ‘we don’t know’ and that’s where I am right now.
Does the test make things any better or easier to understand or decide? It doesn’t. And I don’t accept that. Therefore, for the moment, I’m probably not going to get the screening done.
As I said, if you decide to, that is your decision. I am not here to discourage you from doing what you think is best. It’s your health, do what you feel is best for you.
Incidentally, I had a mammogram today and it came back normal. So there’s that.