Familial Cancer Screening

In a very small number of patients with a strong family history of pancreatic cancer, that may include two or more first degree relatives affected by pancreatic cancer or a known genetic abnormality, screening using endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) surveillance may be considered.  The true value of screening is unknown and is performed as part of research studies. Research has shown that early detection and treatment of pancreatic cancer greatly improves survival rates.

A screening trial at Austin Health is currently underway. This trial combines the work of the departments of Surgery, Gastroenterology, Genetics and the Olivia Newton John Cancer Centre at Austin Health in collaboration with Sydney’s St Vincent’s Hospital and the Garvan Institute of Medical Research. The aim of this study is to identify and screen high-risk individuals using endoscopic ultra-sound, a diagnostic test to detect small changes to the pancreas.

Who is eligible?

  • People with at least two close relatives known to have pancreatic cancer.
  • People who carry a BRCA2 gene fault and have a family history of pancreatic cancer.
  • People with Peutz-Jeghers Syndrome.
  • People with hereditary Pancreatitis.
  • People with Familial Atypical Mole Melanoma Syndrome that carry the p16 gene with at least one first degree relative known to have pancreatic cancer.
  • People who carry a PALP2 gene fault who have one first degree relative known to have pancreatic cancer.
  • Mismatch repair gene fault carriers (Lynch syndrome) with one first degree relative with pancreatic cancer.

What is involved?

  • Genetic Counselling.
  • Endoscopic Ultrasound and Blood Test.

To register for Familial Pancreatic Cancer Screening email info@pancare.org.au

Further Reading – References & Resources