Komen Chicago Success Stories

amita-healthAlexian Brothers cancer institute offers free genetic counseling for uninsured and under-insured
women in the northwest suburbs. Insurance can cover the test, but sometimes they’re not always covered by Medicaid or Medicare and can be very expensive.

When a 65-year-old woman did not meet criteria to have her testing covered by Medicare, Alexian Brothers was able to use Komen funds to cover the cost. At 65, the patient had just been diagnosed with breast cancer, but also had four separate skin cancers diagnosed when she was in her 60s.  Her personal and family history suggested a strong likelihood of a hereditary mutation. Tested for the BRCA gene, she was found to have a deleterious MYUTH mutation, putting her at increased risk for small bowel cancer and a very significant risk (43 to 100 percent) for colorectal cancer. She is now receiving follow up that may require surgery.  Also, family members are being tested, including her daughter, 35, son, 37 and sister, 68, to determine if they are carriers of the MUTYH gene.

Because of the Komen Funds, this woman was able to get the help she needed and ultimately help protect her family.