One of the key questions in any cancer diagnosis is what, if any, is the predisposition of the same diagnosis occuring in other family members.
My cancer, multiple myeloma, is very different than retinalblastoma. But one day out of the blue my 10 year old son asked me if he might get my cancer when he grew up…
This research linked and excerpted below speaks to this issue in ret. If a baby has ret and the parents know that there is a small chance of the younger siblings may also have ret then the parents can look for for it.
I am a cancer survivor and cancer coach. If you would like to learn more about ret. please scroll down the page, post a question or comment and I will reply to you ASAP.
“The finding, published online in Lancet Oncology, is a breakthrough in recognizing that a single cancer gene (an oncogene) drives an aggressive ret that starts long before birth in families with no history of the disease…”
“This research completely challenges conventional thinking and clinical practice,” says Dr. Gallie. “The common type of ret is initiated by damage to both copies of the RB1 tumor suppressor gene; the predisposition to this type of retinoblastoma can be inherited, so the other eye of the child and those of infant relatives are at risk to develop tumours…
The oncogene-driven tumours are much larger than those anticipated in children with inherited retinoblastoma at the same age. “The earliest diagnosis comes when parents observe a white (instead of black) pupil of the eye, and the doctors listen to their observations and understand the urgency of referral. Sometimes Mom really does know best and clinicians should pay close attention…”
Although less than 2% of unilateral retinoblastoma tumors are driven by the oncogene, the early age of onset predicts that about 1 in 5 babies diagnosed under six months of age actually has oncogene-driven retinoblastoma. “All the babies were completely cured by surgery,” says Dr. Gallie…
When we remove the eye with a large tumour in very young babies and show it is the new oncogene-driven type of retinoblastoma, there is believed to be zero risk for retinoblastoma developing in the other eye or in other infants in the family.”