Genetic Screening

Your genes play a major role in how cancer develops. At Good Samaritan Medical Center, genetic screening plays an equally big role in treating your cancer. By learning about your genes, we can determine your risk for certain types of cancer, including colon cancer and ovarian. 

What is included in Genetic Testing?

Hereditary Risk Assessment – During your initial evaluation period, you will fill out a family history questionnaire, which includes questions regarding your personal and family history of cancer.

How it Works – Genetic testing consists of a mouthwash or blood test. Analysis of the sample can determine if you inherited a gene mutation that may increase your cancer risk.

Results of Genetic Testing – Genetic testing can help you make informed decisions about how to manage your future healthcare. Test results can help your health care provider develop a plan of care just for you and also be of great value to family members. Before and after genetic testing, you may have a genetic counseling session.

Genetic Counseling – During your genetic counseling session, our genetics counselor will help simplify the complex concepts into terms you can understand. The goal is to provide clear information about genetic risk factors and address your questions and concerns.

Considerations for Genetic Testing

Do you or a close blood relative (sibling, half-sibling, parent, child, aunt/uncle, niece/nephew, grandparent or grandchild) have any of the following?

Breast/Ovarian/Pancreatic/Prostate Cancer

  • Ovarian cancer
  • Early-onset breast cancer (45 or younger)
  • Triple-negative (ER-, PR-, HER2-) breast cancer at or before age 60
  • Male breast cancer
  • A family history of ovarian, breast, pancreatic, melanoma, or metastatic prostate cancer
  • Breast or ovarian cancer and Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry

Colorectal Cancer

  • Colorectal or uterine cancer diagnosed before age 50
  • Multiple family members with colon or uterine cancer
  • Tumors of the colon, rectum, uterus, stomach, ovary, pancreas, kidney, biliary tract, brain, small bowel or sebaceous gland in three or more relatives
  • More than 10 colorectal polyps
  • Colon tumor with abnormal gene testing

If you checked any boxes above, you should consider genetic testing.

Meet our Cancer Genetics Counselor

Cathy MarinakCathy Marinak, APRN, AOCNP

Cathy is a native of West Palm Beach. She received her undergraduate degree from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN, and her graduate degree from Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton FL. She has received advanced training in genetics from multiple programs across the country. She has been board certified in Oncology since 1988. Beginning in 1998 with her master’s thesis, Cathy has been the recipient, or co-recipient of numerous grants from the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Most recently Cathy was the recipient of an American Cancer Society grant the culminated with the development of a screening tool and pocket guide to help educate patients and providers alike about high risk features, and screening guidelines for colorectal cancer. She also recently completed a quality of life study that evaluated the use of iPads with mindful meditation apps in the pre and post breast biopsy setting. Cathy has two adult daughters, and lives in Stuart with her husband.

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