Latinas With BRCA1 or 2 Mutations Are More Likely to Choose Surgery

December 10, 2017

The uptake of prophylactic surgeries among Latinas with germline BRCA mutations may be slightly lower than what has been reported in non-Hispanic whites but higher than in African Americans, a group of U.S. researchers said. They presented their findings on Saturday, December 10, during a poster session at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.

Noting the “paucity of data on Latinas and prophylactic measures among BRCA1/2 carriers,” the researchers designed the observational UPTAKE study of Latinas with germline BRCA1 or 2 mutations. Subjects, excluding women with ovarian cancer, reported increased choice of prophylactic surgeries (bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy [BSO], bilateral mastectomy in unaffected women, and contralateral mastectomy) in carriers with breast cancer. All participants had been informed that they carried a deleterious BRCA1 or 2 mutation at least one year prior to completing the interview. As of mid-June, the group had conducted 86 interviews.

The population was diverse in terms of country of origin: 50.0% (n = 43) were born in the United States, 22.1% (n = 19) in Mexico, 11.6% (n = 10) in Puerto Rico, 4.6% (n = 4) in El Salvador, 3.5% (n = 3) in Ecuador, and 8.1% (n = 7) in other Latin American countries. A total of 30% reported annual household incomes less than $50,000. Only 26.7% (n = 23) of women reported having a graduate degree. Approximately one quarter of participants were unemployed at the time of study participation (26.7%, n = 23). The majority of women (62.8%, n = 54) were affected with breast cancer, and even more (73.3%, n = 63) had received formal genetic counseling. However, only 18 (28.6%) received counseling in Spanish. A total of 66.3% (n = 57) of women opted to undergo BSO, and 58.1% (n = 50) underwent prophylactic mastectomy. Being born outside the United States and currently working were associated with higher choice of BSO.

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