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Cancer Risk

What is cancer genetic counseling?

Cancer genetic counseling provides information for individuals and families who are concerned about cancer risk due to family history or a genetic condition.

Cancer genetic counseling may include:

  • Discussions about an individual’s specific concerns about cancer risk
  • Detailed evaluation of the family history
  • Assessment of cancer risk for an individual and for family members
  • Information and counseling about the potential option and appropriateness of genetic testing
  • Discussion about the possible benefits, drawbacks and limitations of genetic testing
  • Review and interpretation of genetic test results
  • Information on healthcare options
  • If needed, referrals to other health care specialists and support services
  • A written summary of the evaluation and discussions

Who may benefit from cancer genetic counseling?

Individuals may benefit from cancer genetic counseling if there is a personal or family history which includes one or more of the following:

  • Cancer diagnosis at an early age (such as colon cancer under age 50)
  • Several family members with cancer
  • More than one new cancer in an individual
  • Paired organs that are affected (such as cancer in both breasts)
  • Unusual cancers (such as male breast cancer)
  • Cancer associated with birth defects or with genetic disorders
  • Family member(s) with an identified cancer risk gene
  • Concern about cancer risk due to a personal or family history

Who provides cancer genetic counseling?

Cancer genetic counseling at Upstate Medical University is provided by Bonnie R. Braddock, MPH, CGC, a board certified genetic counselor with specialized experience in cancer genetics. A genetic counselor is a health care provider with a graduate degree for genetic counseling who has expertise in evaluating and discussing the hereditary factors associated with certain diseases such as with some cancers.

The genetic counselors within the Upstate Genetics Center work in collaboration with Joe J. Hoo, MD, a certified medical geneticist.


Individuals and healthcare providers are welcome to call Bonnie Braddock at 315 464-6395 with questions or to schedule an appointment.