Patient preferences regarding recontact by cancer genetics clinicians

Constance A. Griffin, Jennifer E. Axilbund, Ann Marie Codori, Ginny Deise, Betty May, Cheryl Pendergrass, Miriam Tillery, Jill D. Trimbath, Francis M. Giardiello

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Background: Ongoing advances in cancer genetics lead to new opportunities for early disease detection, predictive genetic testing and potential interventions. Limited information exists on patient preferences concerning recontact to provide updated information. We evaluated colon cancer genetics patient preferences concerning recontact about advances in medical genetics. Methods: Information was mailed to 851 individuals seen at the Colon Cancer Risk Assessment Clinic at the Johns Hopkins Hospital and to participants in a colon cancer gene testing study seen during an 8-year period. Information provided included description of advances in gene testing technology, discovery of MSH6 and MYH genes, detailed fact sheets and a survey of patient preferences for notification and potential uses of new information. Results: Most patients wanted an ongoing relationship with genetics providers (63%), reinitiated by genetics providers (65%) and contact only with information specifically relevant to them (51%). Most preferred personalized letters as the means of contact (55%). Reasons for and against recontact and circumstances in which individuals would pursue additional genetic testing were also tabulated. There were few statistically significant differences in the responses between clinic and study participants. Conclusion: Patients evaluated in a colon cancer risk assessment clinic want updated information at a rate similar to those who participated in a colon cancer gene testing study. These findings have implications for the consultative nonlongitudinal nature of such clinics and suggest patient preferences for personally-tailored information could be labor intensive.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)265-273
Number of pages9
JournalFamilial Cancer
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Cancer genetics
  • Colon cancer
  • Genetic testing
  • Recontact

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Oncology
  • Genetics(clinical)
  • Cancer Research


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