Ethical Management of Hereditary Cancer Information

Author: Hansson, Mats G.

Source: Acta Oncologica, Volume 38, Number 3, 18 May 1999 , pp. 305-308(4)

Publisher: Informa Healthcare

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Genetic diagnosis yields information that is highly relevant for both the patient and the genetic relatives of the patient. In this article two ethical problems are discussed. Under what conditions should hereditary cancer information be given to a relative? It is suggested that in order to answer this question, three factors have to be considered and a balance struck: the seriousness of the condition, the existence of treatment or prevention and the reliability of the diagnosis. The second issue discussed in the article relates to the psychosocial effects of giving hereditary cancer information. It is argued that ethical management of clinical practice requires that further attention must be given to the psychosocial effects on both the individual and the family.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: May 18, 1999

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