More women than ever are being encouraged to undergo screening for BRCA gene mutations, based on newly announced U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommendations. The task force’s major recommendations are:
• All women of Ashkenazi Jewish descent should undergo testing to see if they have the genetic mutation.
• Women who have been diagnosed with breast, ovarian or tubal cancer in the past and who have completed treatment also should be tested, even if their physicians say they are currently cancer free.
The previous task force recommendations, issued in 2013, called for screening only women who have a family history of breast, ovarian, tubal or peritoneal cancer.