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GRACIAS Texas Program

Genetic Risk Assessment for Cancer In All South Texas

It is well known that one of the factors that increases risk of cancer is family history, especially when cancers occur in multiple family members at a relatively young age, such as when breast cancer occurs at younger than 45, or colon cancer at younger than 50.

A genetic risk for breast cancer can be associated with other cancers including ovarian, prostate or pancreatic cancer in adults, and, less commonly, in children. When breast and ovarian cancer develops in the same woman or within a family, it raises a strong concern for a genetic risk. 

A genetic risk for colon cancer can be associated with other cancers of the uterus or ovaries. The presence of multiple polyps in the colon (polyposis) also suggests a genetic risk.

Our GRACIAS Texas program provides assistance to individuals living in the broad region of South Texas, including rural and border regions, who are concerned that they may have a hereditary risk of cancer and are interested in better defining their risk. We provide services, including genetic counseling, through telehealth or in-person appointments.

Initial consultation consists of a brief, introductory questionnaire, followed by a discussion with a genetic counselor. In some cases, genetic testing is recommended. Financial assistance is available in many situations.

Your experience

Each patient will receive a one-on-one consultation, either in person or through telehealth visit. Spanish translation is available with advance notice.

Patients will meet with a board-certified genetic counselor or an oncologist trained in genetic risk assessment and counseling.

When appropriate, patients will undergo genetic testing. All testing will be performed in a commercial laboratory and coordinated through the program. Financial assistance may be available for patients.

Community health care workers are available to coordinate genetic testing for at-risk patients in San Antonio, Del Rio, Edinburg, Harlingen and Laredo. 

Additional information on genetic risks for cancer can be found on the National Cancer Institute Genetic Testing Fact Sheet. 

Our GRACIAS Texas program is funded by a grant from the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (PPP160011).