SGCMH Nurse Receives Genetic Testing Certification
Ste. Genevieve, MO. Ste. Genevieve County Memorial Hospital congratulates Andrea Gegg, RN, on receiving her Heredity Cancer Genetic Certification from City of Hope Cancer Research Hospital.
The certification was an intensive 13-week online program and required completing weekly lecture videos, assignments and tests, as well as a final exam.
“It was a major accomplishment for me,” she said. “And, I was determined to complete the process even with many demands from work and home.”
Andrea was encouraged to get her certification from Mary Crecelius, MSN, WHNP, APNG, CCBE, and Deborah Raney, MSN, FNP-BC, both of whom provide genetic counseling as part of their work at SGCMH.
“I find the whole subject of genetics fascinating,” she said. “New information is coming to light every day. It’s amazing how much has changed in the four years that I’ve been assisting Mary and Debbie.”
Andrea explained that genetic testing can help patients estimate their risk for developing certain cancers, including breast, ovarian, prostate, and colon cancer by searching for specific changes in your genes, called mutations. Hereditary cancer risk assessment and genetic testing can provide important information for planning for future health needs of patients at risk and preventive care for women and men with a family history.
“We can draw labs here in the office if genetic testing is recommended,” she said. “Results of the test are reviewed with the patient in detail. We stress that genetic testing cannot say if cancer will develop for sure, but it can tell if a patient is at a higher risk than most people. Awareness is the key. Knowing your risk allows you to make informed healthcare decisions and manage any increased cancer risk.”
Staying up to date in the field of genetics is challenging.
“You have to keep up with what’s going on,” she said. “If there are big changes, we need to notify our patients who may be affected and make changes for a healthier future. I really enjoy it and look forward to additional learning opportunities as we find more ways to provide care.”
Genetic Testing is quick, easy and done right in your provider’s office using a blood or saliva sample. The kit is then shipped to a lab for analysis. Once your test results return, your provider will discuss the results with you. Genetic tests are available for these types of cancer:
Breast cancer Colon cancer
Kidney cancer Melanoma
Ovarian cancer Pancreatic cancer
Prostate cancer Sarcoma
Stomach cancer Thyroid cancer
Individuals with familial or hereditary cancer risk have a much greater chance of developing cancer during their lifetime. Hereditary cancer testing is the best way to determine if you have hereditary, familial or general population risk. Other risks include a personal or family history of cancer at an early age, multiple and rare cancers, or a rare mutation in the family.
Genetic testing appointments can be scheduled at Bloomsdale Women’s Wellness at 573-883-2525 or Ste. Genevieve Surgical Care at 573-883-5717.
Ste. Genevieve County Memorial Hospital is a nonprofit county owned community hospital that works to continue to improve the health and well-being of the community. Our professional staff uses advanced technology and medicine to provide excellent, personalized, and compassionate healthcare. For more information on Ste. Genevieve County Memorial Hospital, visit stegenevievehospital.org.