Genetic Counseling

Reducing Risk of Hereditary Cancers

The Cancer Genetics Program of Prisma Health Cancer Institute is led by Dr. Carla Jorgensen and Dr. Kim H. Yee and is staffed by four board-certified genetic counselors. The goals of the program are to identify individuals and families who are at increased risk for hereditary cancer; offer options for genetic testing, screening, and medical management based on the individual and family histories; and reduce the chance for developing certain types of cancer by personalizing screening and risk-reduction plans.

Should I seek genetic counseling?

If you or a close blood relative (parent, child, brother/sister, aunt/uncle or grandparent) has a history of any of the following, or if there already has been genetic testing in your family and there is a known gene mutation, please ask your doctor about referring you for an appointment for genetic counseling.

Breast Cancer

  • You were diagnosed with breast cancer under age 50
  • You have had triple negative breast cancer (ER/PR/Her2Neu negative)
  • You have had two different breast cancers at any age
  • You were diagnosed with breast cancer at any age AND you have
    • One relative with breast cancer before age 50 OR
    • Ovarian cancer at any age, OR
    • Two relatives on the same side of the family with breast cancer, pancreatic cancer and/or metastatic prostate cancer at any age
  • You, or a very close relative, had male breast cancer at any age
  • You have never had breast cancer, but you have multiple relatives on the same side of the family with breast, ovarian, pancreatic and/or metastatic prostate cancer

Other Female Cancer

  • You had ovarian cancer at any age
  • You had uterine cancer under age 50
  • You have had uterine cancer and colon cancer at any age

Other Cancers

  • Personal history of pancreatic cancer at any age
  • Personal history of metastatic prostate cancer at any age

Colon Cancer/Polyps

  • You have had colon cancer or rectal cancer under age 50
  • You have had more than 10 colon polyps in your lifetime
  • You have had colon cancer at any age AND you have a personal or family history of uterine cancer, stomach cancer, ovarian cancer, small bowel cancer, kidney/ureter cancer, brain cancer, pancreatic cancer or bile duct cancer

What happens during genetic counseling?

  • Detailed information will be gathered about who in the family has had cancer, what types of cancer, and their ages of diagnosis.  If you do not know your family history, it is still okay to have a genetic counseling appointment.
  • Assessment of the likelihood that a hereditary cancer syndrome may be responsible for the cancer in your family.
  • Discussion of your risk for developing cancer, options for high-risk screening and cancer prevention.
  • Genetic testing is your choice.  We will review benefits, limitations and risks of genetic testing and help you make the right decision about whether to pursue it.  This includes a discussion about how testing is performed, which laboratories are used, test costs and whether or not your health insurance plan will cover testing.
  • If testing is pursued, a simple tube of blood or saliva can be collected during the visit.  The genetic counselor contacts patients directly with test results.  A follow-up appointment may be scheduled  to discuss test results and how to manage related cancer risks.

After your appointment is scheduled,you will receive an e-mail (subject Cancer Gene Connect) with instructions on how to complete the online medical history intake. You can access the online questionnaire here: Please complete this online questionnaire before your appointment. It should take about 10 minutes to complete. It is common to not know all the answers, so it is OK to leave questions blank if needed.

If you do not receive this email, please call 864-455-1346 to get your login information. If you do not have email or online access, you may receive a phone call prior to the visit to complete the intake via phone. If you are not contacted by phone, the genetic counselor will complete the questionnaire with you in-person during the visit.

Please bring your insurance card and a copy of any genetic test results available, from you or your immediate family members, with you  to your appointment.

Will insurance cover my visit?

The genetic counseling office visit is billed separately from any genetic tests that may be ordered. Pre-authorization is required in some cases and if so will be obtained by our financial department.

Insurance coverage for laboratory fees will be discussed with you at your visit. Most patients have lab fees that are $250.00 or less.

What if test results reveal I have a hereditary cancer predisposition?

  • If test results are positive, an in-person visit with the genetic counselor and medical oncologist is recommended to discuss cancer risks and management recommendations to reduce these risks and/or prevent cancer.
  • You will have the option of continued care through a Genetics Management Clinic provided at the Center for Integrative Oncology and Survivorship (CIOS). This clinic is a yearly visit with an oncology nurse practitioner and nurse navigator for individuals  who test positive for hereditary cancer.
  • When a person tests positive for hereditary cancer, family members may also be at risk. The genetic counselor can assist with coordination of genetic testing for family members.

Referral information

Click here for Cancer Genetic Counseling Referral Form

We encourage patients interested in genetic counseling to have their provider make a referral. To make a referral in Epic, click “place ambulatory order,” type “ambulatory referral to CIOS,” select Genetics within the order and select the Faris Road or Spartanburg location within the order. Outside providers can fax the linked referral form to 864-672-7802 (Greenville) or 864-672-7802 (Spartanburg). Patients with questions about genetic counseling can call 864-455-1346.

Our locations and contact information

Greenville Location
900 W. Faris Road
Greenville, SC 29605
864-455-1346 | 864-672-7802 fax

Click here for printable directions

Spartanburg Location
120 Dillon Drive
Spartanburg, SC 29307
864-699-5700 | 864-672-7802 fax

How May We Help You Today?

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Allison Bellomo, MS, CGC
Allison Bellomo, MS, CGC
Lindsay Metcalf, MS, CGC
Lindsay Metcalf, MS, CGC
Kara Bui, MS, CGC
Kara Bui, MS, CGC
Gail Stapleton, MS, CGC
Gail Stapleton, MS, CGC
Monday Medical Minute:
Genetic Counseling Program
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