What is the risk-reducing surgery?
Some women who are found to have a BRCA mutation choose to have risk-reducing surgery to lower their risk of cancer. Surgery to remove the ovaries can be carried out from about 40 years of age, when women have completed their families, and when the risk of ovarian cancer starts to increase. Removing a woman’s ovaries before the menopause is also known to reduce the risk of breast cancer. If a woman decides to have her ovaries removed before the menopause she should consider taking hormone replacement therapy to help treat the symptoms. Risk-reducing surgery to remove healthy breast tissue (risk-reducing mastectomy) may also be considered by some women. This is a very individual decision and obviously needs careful consideration. If a woman wishes to consider this option, her breast surgeon can provide further information.