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Li-Fraumeni Syndrome - How to prevent?

Li-Fraumeni Syndrome - Preparing for surgery

Li-Fraumeni Syndrome - Post-surgery care

Li-Fraumeni Syndrome - Other Information

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Who is the best person in the family to undergo genetic testing?
A: Genetic testing is usually offered to the family member whose cancer diagnosis is most suggestive of hereditary cancer syndrome (e.g., someone with a personal history of a cancer at a young age). It is usually not advisable to test someone without a history of cancer/tumours.

The genetic test results of an asymptomatic individual may have limitations:

  • If they were to receive a negative result, it may not mean that there is no hereditary cause of cancer/tumours in the family. The individual being tested may not have inherited it, but others in the family may have, or the faulty gene may not have been identified yet.
  • The result is only useful to the asymptomatic person being tested and their children, but not to their parents, siblings and other seconddegree family members.

Once the faulty TP53 gene in the family is identified, genetic testing can be offered to other at-risk family members (including those who do not have cancer) to manage their risks.

Q: Is testing recommended in children?
A: Genetic testing for LFS is recommended in young children due to an increased risk of childhood cancer from a young age. However, testing for LFS in children is only offered when the child has a personal history of certain cancers, or if a faulty TP53 gene is identified in the family.

Common Myths & Misconceptions

  1. If my genetic test result is positive, it means that I have or will have tumours/cancer, or my tumour/cancer will recur.

    FALSE. Results from a genetic test do not determine the likelihood of cancer recurrence or the presence of a tumour/cancer. Instead, a positive result from your genetic test indicates that there is an increased risk of cancer.

  2. I only have brothers, so I do not need to tell them – this condition can only pass through females.

    FALSE. The faulty gene for LFS can be passed to and through both females and males. There are cancer risks for both genders. It is important for both females and males to undergo testing to understand if they have inherited the faulty gene.

    Brothers and sisters who inherit the gene fault have a 50% (1 in 2) chance of passing it on to any children (daughters and sons) they have.

  3. If I test positive, it means that my children will also have LFS.

    FALSE. If you have a positive genetic test result (a faulty gene is identified), it means that your children have a 50% (1 in 2) chance of inheriting that gene fault.

  4. My daughter looks a lot like me, so she must have inherited the faulty gene(s) since I have it.

    FALSE.Genes that govern your appearance are different from cancerrelated genes like TP53 that cause LFS. All first-degree relatives (siblings, children, parents) have a 50% (1 in 2) chance of inheriting the faulty TP53 gene.

  5. I have two brothers, so one will inherit the gene fault and one will not, because there is a 50% chance.

    FALSE. Each first-degree relative (parents, siblings, children) has a 50% (1 in 2) chance of inheriting the faulty gene. The genetic test result of one sibling does not determine the chances of the other sibling.

  6. I only need to tell my brothers, sisters and children. My distant relatives (aunties, uncles, cousins) are too far removed so I do not need to let them know.

    FALSE. Distant relatives can inherit the faulty gene responsible for LFS. It is important to let them know so that they can consider genetic testing to understand their risk of developing cancer.

  7. I (or my relative) already had cancer, so I (or my relative) need not undergo genetic testing.

    FALSE. Individuals who have been diagnosed with cancer previously should still consider genetic testing, especially if they have a personal history suggestive of LFS.

    Individuals with LFS are also at higher risk of developing multiple primary tumours, for which there are early screening strategies that can help detect tumours/cancer at an early and manageable stage. Their genetic testing result can also help doctors make important treatment decisions.

Download the Li-Fraumeni syndrome brochure.

The information provided is not intended as medical advice. Terms of use. Information provided by SingHealth