Were Women Foolish To Follow Angelina Jolie Into BRCA Cancer Gene Testing?
1/5/2017 7:22:37 AM
Swayed by the power of celebrity, many women needlessly rushed to get genetic testing for the cancer-causing BRCA mutations right after actress Angelina Jolie announced in May 2013 that she underwent a double mastectomy based on a positive BRCA test, concluded a study in the BMJ last month.
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Other studies, too, have reported an uptick in BRCA testing after Jolie’s announcement — the “Angelina effect” — but this one went further. Although insurance claims for nearly 10 million women aged 18 to 64 showed that BRCA testing rose 64 percent in the 15 days after Jolie described her BRCA result and surgery, that wasn’t followed by additional mastectomies.
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