cover image A Cancer in the Family: Take Control of Your Genetic Inheritance

A Cancer in the Family: Take Control of Your Genetic Inheritance

Theodora Ross. Avery, $24.95 (304p) ISBN 978-1-10198-283-9

At any given moment, 13 million people in the United States have cancer, writes first-time author Ross. For people with family members who have been diagnosed with the disease—and wondering what that may imply about their own health—this number may be especially frightening. To allay those fears, Ross, who directs the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center’s Cancer Genetics Program, explains genetic cancer testing with candor and intelligence while also chronicling her own journey after being diagnosed with melanoma. Supported by solid medical information as well as her experience as an oncologist and cancer biologist, Ross stresses the value of genetic testing and counseling; straightforwardly explains the science of DNA; discusses how to compose a family history, even as an adoptee, and use it to identify an inherited predisposition to cancer; offers an overview of treatments and therapies; and includes appendices covering a wide range of genetically inherited cancer syndromes and guidelines for managing them. Packed with information shared by a compassionate and empathetic voice, Ross’s tome is a thoughtful and measured tool for health advocacy that many will find useful. (Feb.)