Women in our area now have more access to a test that could save their lives.
KENNEWICK, WA - Women in our area now have more access to a test that could save their lives.
It is an important breast cancer test called the BRCA and it is being offered at Trios Health.
The actual test only take one minute, and it checks for breast and ovarian cancer genes.
Women that have a family history of these cancers are highly encouraged to take it.
"I have two daughters and I want to be proactive in their health care rather than reactive," said Judy McDonald Paxton, she as a family history of breast and ovarian cancer, the BRCA test will determine if she inherited the cancer gene, potentially a life saving test for her and her daughters.
"It is scary to think about that but again I think the sooner we find out the faster we can get going on something if in fact it is positive," she added.
The test consists of swooshing around two small cups of mouthwash for about 30 seconds each and then spitting them into a test tube the samples are then sent to Utah for testing.
Rachel Gorham, Nurse Practitioner has been spearheading efforts to get other providers in the area trained in the test.
"I really realized there was just a lack in the community of knowledge of breast cancer awareness and what do we do with a family history of breast cancer, so I started to just seek out help on my own and started to get training on my own to really become that independent provider to really take this on, head on," she said.
Only about one in 300 to 500 women will get a BRCA positive test, this means they are at an 87 percent risk of developing cancer.
But even if the test is negative, just having a family history of breast and ovarian cancer already greatly increases the risk and proper precautions are necessary.
"I will feel relieved about the results either way simply because if it's positive we can start doing something about it and if it's negative that's better news for my daughters," added McDonald Paxton.
NBC Right Now will be back at Trios Health next month when McDonald Paxton gets her results back we will be sure to share the rest of her story with you.