Cancer Genetics

The Center for Cancer Risk Assessment provides comprehensive genetic counseling and testing services for those who may be at increased risk of hereditary cancer.
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Talk to an access nurse today 877-726-5130

Overview

Our team helps to identify families that may have a hereditary cancer syndrome and, when indicated, provides genetic testing, screening and support. Our certified and licensed genetic counselors are experienced in helping patients gather the information they need to make informed healthcare decisions. We offer hereditary cancer risk assessment, education and genetic testing across a variety of specialty clinics.

 

Convenient, Multidisciplinary Care

CCRA patients have access to all of the resources of Massachusetts General Hospital, which means a multidisciplinary team of specialists is available to manage every aspect of your care. If you learn you have a genetic predisposition to cancer, your options for care may include:

    • Ongoing surveillance and monitoring
    • Immediate action and treatment at the appropriate time
    • Prophylactic surgery, care and follow-up
    • Genetic counseling and testing for family members
    • Access to the Mass General Fertility Center's Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis Program

 

Developing Better Therapies through Research

Like all treatment centers within the Cancer Center, our program is highly involved in research. We lead and participate in studies to develop a better understanding of the genetic causes of several cancer syndromes as well as studies to advance cancer treatment and screenings.

 

 

 

Answers to Genetic Testing and Genetic Counseling FAQs, by our expert team of Certified Genetic Counselors. Learn More

Meet the Team

Co-Directors

Meet the Genetic Counselors Team

Patient Education

Genetic Testing Frequently Asked Questions:

Answers to Genetic Testing and Genetic Counseling FAQs, by our expert team of Certified Genetic Counselors.

Learn more about the Center for Cancer Risk Assessment clinics:

Breast and Ovarian Cancer Genetics and Risk Assessment Clinic
helps to identify families that may have a hereditary breast and/or ovarian cancer syndrome and, when indicated, offer genetic testing, cancer screening and support.

Endocrine Tumor Genetics Clinic
helps to identify families that may have a hereditary risk for endocrine tumors and, when indicated, offer genetic testing, screening and support.

Familial Renal Cell Carcinoma and von Hippel-Lindau Disease Clinic
helps to identify families that may have a hereditary renal (kidney) cancer syndrome and, when indicated, offer genetic testing, screening and support.

Gastrointestinal Cancer Genetics Clinic
helps identify families that may have a hereditary colon or gastrointestinal cancer syndrome and, when indicated, offer genetic testing, cancer screening and support.

Melanoma Genetics Clinic
helps to identify families that may have a hereditary melanoma syndrome and, when indicated, offer genetic testing, cancer screening and support.

Neuro-Oncology Genetics Clinic
offers genetic counseling and testing for patients with neurofibromatosis (NF1, NF2, schwannomatosis) as well as those with strong personal and family histories of cancers of the central nervous system.

Resources

Resources at Mass General Cancer Center

  • Wellness and Support Programs
    Our support programs are designed to help patients, their families and caregivers cope with the challenges of a cancer diagnosis. We offer a wide range of integrative therapies, workshops and support groups. On this page you will find complete listings of our upcoming program offerings.
  • The Maxwell V. Blum Cancer Resource Program
    The Maxwell V. Blum Cancer Resource Program at the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center provides cancer patients and their families with information and resources for living with cancer.
  • The Marjorie E. Korff Parenting At a Challenging Time (PACT) ProgramThe Marjorie E. Korff PACT program at the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center provides psycho-educational support for parents who are patients.

Outside Support Groups

  • FORCE (Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered)
    FORCE is the only national nonprofit organization devoted to hereditary breast and ovarian cancer. Their mission includes support, education, advocacy, awareness, and research specific to hereditary breast and ovarian cancer. 
  • Be Bright Pink
    Bright Pink is a national non-profit organization that provides education and support to young women who are at high risk for breast and ovarian cancer. They arm young women with knowledge, options and a great attitude, and offer companionship and empathy during their journey. 
  • VHLA (von Hippel-Lindau Alliance)
    The VHL Alliance provides information for families and physicians about this disorder and local self-help support groups for families affected with VHL. Local family support chapters exist in regions of the U.S. Local chapter meetings are scheduled periodically. International VHL Support Organizations are established on six continents.
  • No Stomach For Cancer
    No Stomach For Cancer is a non-profit organization, established to provide Hereditary Diffuse Gastric Cancer families with education and support, while helping to advance research into HDGC diagnosis, screening, treatment, and prevention.
  • Lynch Syndrome International
    Lynch Syndrome International (LSI) provides information and assistance to individuals with Hereditary Non-Polyposis Colorectal Cancer, also known as HNPCC or Lynch syndrome. LSI works to promote education regarding cancer surveillance and screening, while also providing patients with local resources.
  • Hereditary Colon Cancer Takes Guts
    The Hereditary Colon Cancer Foundation is a nonprofit organization serving the hereditary colorectal cancer community. They provide resources for patients and healthcare providers on a comprehensive website.

General Information

News & Updates

Looking Back, Facing Forward (LBFF) – Conference for BRCA carriers

The 8th Biennial Conference for BRCA mutation carriers will take place on Saturday, May 13, 2017 at Mass General Hospital. This event brings together BRCA carriers and their family members from Mass General, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center to connect with one another while learning about updates in the management of BRCA-related cancer risk, exploring local support resources, and sharing experiences. It is an opportunity to learn from renowned physicians in the field, as well as from other BRCA carriers at various points in their journeys. This popular event will be a fantastic educational and community-building opportunity! If you are a BRCA carrier, you will be receiving information in the mail with event and registration details. We look forward to seeing you there!

Telemedicine: Expanding our Reach

For the last 10 years, Mass General's Center for Cancer Risk Assessment (CCRA) has been providing on-site genetic counseling to various community hospitals in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine. Recently, we teamed with the MGH TeleHealth program in order to provide patients at Central Maine Medical Center (CMMC) in Lewiston, ME, with virtual genetic counseling.

“Telegenetics” is the provision of genetic counseling services at a distance, over a computer network. Just like an in person genetic counseling visit, a patient schedules an appointment with CMMC and attends the appointment at their facility. Through a secure video connection, the patient meets with a genetic counselor that is stationed in Boston at MGH. Genetic counseling is provided and, if appropriate, genetic testing coordinated through a blood draw at the CMMC facility. This program has been incredibly well received by both patients and providers and offers the expertise of MGH genetic counselors more readily to our patients at CMMC.

Get to know our Newest Genetic Counselors:

The CCRA is excited to welcome three new genetic counselors to the team!

Shelley McCormick, MS, LCGC earned a bachelor of arts in Behavioral Biology from The Johns Hopkins University and her master’s degree in Genetic Counseling from Brandeis University. After graduating from Brandeis in 2005, she joined the Center for Cancer Genetics and Prevention at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, where she provided clinical genetic counseling and worked on a number of research projects. Ms. McCormick’s research interests include the use of teleconferencing technology to provide genetic counseling to patients in remote areas. As a senior genetic counselor in the CCRA, Ms. McCormick provides risk assessment and genetic counseling services in both the Breast/Ovarian and GI Cancer Genetics clinics at the MGH Boston Campus. She was recently appointed to the Massachusetts Board of Registration of Genetic Counselors. A dedicated bike commuter, Ms. McCormick also enjoys traveling and cheering on her home team, the Boston Celtics.

Amy Mueller, MPH, MS, LCGC graduated from the University of Richmond in 2010 with a bachelor of arts in biology and public health. In 2013 she earned her Master’s in Public Health with an emphasis in Health Law, Bioethics and Human Rights at Boston University. She earned a Master’s in Genetic Counseling from Boston University in 2015. As part of the CCRA, she provides risk assessment and genetic counseling services in a variety of cancer predisposition clinics, including the neuro-oncology genetics clinic. Her interests include ethical issues in genetics and the impact of genetic testing on public health. Outside of the clinic, Ms. Mueller enjoys being outdoors and recently spent a week hiking in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada.

Carly Grant, MS, LCGC earned a master’s degree in Genetic Counseling from Brandeis University in 2005 having previously earned her bachelor of science in Molecular Biology at Haverford College in 1997. After completing her graduate degree, she worked as a prenatal genetic counselor at Massachusetts General Hospital. From 2006-2009 she worked as a research genetic counselor at Boston Children’s Hospital where she also gained experience in clinical pediatric genetics. She then worked with the Center for Cancer Genetics and Prevention at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute where she saw both children and adults at risk for a variety of hereditary cancer syndromes, and she participated in research and educational outreach. Ms. Grant has a love for teaching and presenting about genetics to different audiences. She also has a keen interest in the psychosocial aspects of hereditary cancer syndromes. Ms. Grant is working part-time for the CCRA focusing her care at the MGH Bethke Cancer Center at Emerson Hospital. Outside of the clinics, Ms. Grant enjoys long distance running. This year she is running the Boston Marathon, and we hope you can cheer her on.

Contact

Center for Cancer Risk Assessment
55 Fruit Street, YAW 10B
Boston, Massachusetts  02114
Tel: 617-724-1971
Fax: 617-726-9418

Patient Services Coordinator: Sanae Maouhoub

Request an Appointment Request a Remote Second Opinion

Talk to an access nurse today 877-726-5130

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