The Center for Personalized Genetic Healthcare (CPGH) provides genetic counseling to individuals with a personal and/or family history of cancer. The majority of cancers occur by chance, or are sporadic. However, some cancers are caused by an inherited gene mutation, or are hereditary. Identifying a hereditary predisposition to cancer allows individuals and families to personalize cancer screening guidelines, medical management and treatment options.
Who Should Have a Cancer Genetics Evaluation?
If you have a personal and/or family history of the following, you should consider making an appointment:
- Cancer diagnosed at an early age (i.e., breast or colon cancer diagnosed before 50)
- Several generations of family members affected by cancer
- Multiple primary cancers in one individual (i.e., breast and ovarian cancer or breast cancer in both breasts)
- Ashkenazi (Eastern European) Jewish ancestry and breast or ovarian cancer
- Identified genetic mutation in the family (i.e., relatives of a known BRCA1/2 gene mutation carrier)
- Colon polyps (10 or more)
- Rare tumors (i.e., male breast cancer, paraganglioma, medullary thyroid cancer)
Scheduling an Appointment
Prior to requesting an appointment, you will need to obtain a referral from your physician. If you are a patient outside the Cleveland Clinic health system, please have your physician complete a referral form and fax to 216.445.6935. To learn more about how to prepare for your appointment, review the "What to Expect" tab.
The Center for Personalized Genetic Healthcare (CPGH) is committed to providing comprehensive clinical genetic services, education and support to patients and family members. Our team of genetic experts will work with other Cleveland Clinic primary care providers and specialists to personalize your care by incorporating your genetic information into your overall health care plan.
- Charis Eng, MD, PhD
Genomic Medicine Institute, Chair
Cancer Genetics Clinic, Medical Director
- Adnan Asalah, MD
- Angelika Erwin, MD, PhD
- Holly Pederson, MD
- Brandie Heald Leach, MS, LGC
- Jessica Marquard, MS, LGC
- Rebekah Moore, MS, LGC
- Ryan Noss, MS, LGC
- Jill Polk, MS, LGC
What to Expect
Before Your Visit
Prior to requesting an appointment, you will need to obtain a physician referral. If you are a patient outside the Cleveland Clinic health system, please have your physician complete a physician referral form and fax to 216.445.6935.
Collect Your Medical Records
If you are a patient outside the Cleveland Clinic health system, you should send an authorization for the release of medical records form to each external facility. You may arrange to have medical records faxed (30 pages or less) to our department at 216.445.6935 or sent postal mail.
Center for Personalized Genetic Healthcare
Attn: Cancer Genetics
9500 Euclid Ave. NE50
Cleveland, OH 44195
Collect Your Family Health History
To make the most of your visit, you should gather family health history information prior to your appointment. It may be helpful for you to talk with your relatives about cancers running in your family. Specifically, you will want to discuss the following:
- Who in the family has been diagnosed with cancer, and how are they related to you?
- What type of cancer did each affected relative have, e.g., breast, ovarian, colon, pancreatic?
- At what age was each individual diagnosed with cancer? (If a precise age is not known, it can be helpful to determine the approximate decade in which they were diagnosed, e.g., diagnosed in their 40's, or 70's.)
- At what age did relatives pass away? What was the cause?
- Has anyone in the family had genetic testing?
At Your Visit
We will provide personalized expert genetic counseling and education to you and your family. During your visit, you will see a genetics expert (genetic counselor and/or clinical geneticist) for a genetics evaluation. You may also be scheduled with other Cleveland Clinic providers during your visit depending on your medical needs and physician availability.
Our comprehensive method for genetic counseling involves:
- Diagnosis of a genetic condition through review of family and medical history, examination by a clinical geneticist, and if appropriate, genetic testing
- Education about your specific diagnosis and any associated health risks if known
- Suggestions for future medical care to optimize your health
- Discussion of health risks to family members
- Recommendations regarding genetic testing for at-risk family members and coordination of testing, if desired
If genetic testing is indicated, blood can usually be drawn on the same day following your appointment.
Following Your Visit
After your visit, it may take anywhere from a few days up to two weeks for your clinical appointment notes to reach the healthcare providers that you requested to receive a copy. We are also glad to communicate with your healthcare providers about your case as needed. You are always welcome to follow up with us with questions regarding your visit.
Review some of our patient fact sheets to learn more about hereditary cancer conditions.
Cost & Insurance
Genetic counseling and testing are billed as two separate services.
Genetic Counseling Services
Many insurance companies will cover 96040, which is the CPT code for genetic counseling. However, we do ask that you check with your insurance company to verify that your plan does cover the cost. If your plan does not cover 96040, please contact us at 216.636.1768 and we can discuss the proper payment arrangements with you.
If genetic testing is indicated, your genetic counselor will discuss costs and insurance coverage during your appointment.
To learn more about billing options and financial assistance, review our billing and insurance information.
Appointments & Locations
The Center for Personalized Genetic Healthcare (CPGH) is expanding rapidly. Patients can be evaluated at various main campus clinics, family health centers and regional hospitals. Same day appointments are available.
To schedule an appointment, please call 216.636.1768 or 800.998.4785.