A history of a female blood relative having had cancer is usually thought of as upping cancer risk among women; however a factor that receives rather less attention is the fact that genes inherited from father could also be responsible for developing cancers in women.

genes inherited from fatherAccording to researchers, many medical professionals are unaware of this however, since the fact of genes mutated from the father being responsible for cancer is not that well known.

Research published in The Lancet, stated that “Although most healthcare providers are aware of the increased risk of breast and ovarian cancer in women with a BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene mutation, many remain unaware of the potential for paternal transmission.”

So being unaware of the relevance of the fathers’ health history, this information may not be routinely collected from patients. Research has shown that both men and women with the BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutations have a 50% chance of passing it onto their offspring and health care providers need to be made aware of this.

Women also need to know about this, so that they can pass on information about the father’s family history of cancer to their health care provider, without having to be asked directly about it.