Breast cancer and the importance of genetic testing

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) – Breast cancer awareness month is coming to a close and in light of this one Northwest Arkansan wants to share her story on how genetic testing has potentially saved her life. 

Springdale resident, April Wampler, says her family has had its run-ins with breast cancer. Because of those experiences, she wanted to learn more about her own risk by getting genetic testing. 

“I watched my aunt go through breast cancer, and she eventually lost that battle,” said Wampler. 

A loss that motivated Wampler to want to learn more about what could be in her future. 

 “It’s about an 84-85% chance that I develop it in my lifetime,” says Wampler. 

Medical Director at the Breast Cancer Center at Carti, Dr. Stacy Smith-Foley, says she is inspired that Wampler wanted to share her story to spread awareness about the importance of genetic testing.  

She wants to urge everyone who may be worried about getting it done for themselves, there is more power in knowing.  

“Getting this sort of information is empowering both when the test result is positive for a mutation, as well as when the test result is negative,” says Dr. Smith-Foley. 

A statement Wampler says she can absolutely agree with from first-hand experience. 

“Now that I’m going through the screenings and I’ve learned more and I’ve spoken with genetic counselors, I feel more empowered to make choices so I can lead a long healthy life,” says Wampler. 

Dr. Smith-Foley says if you’re interested in getting genetic testing done you can call to make an appointment and the test itself can be as easy as a mouth swab. 

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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