Q. I already know I have a family history of cancer. Why should I get tested?

A. Testing for a hereditary cancer risk helps you and your healthcare professional understand your risk so you can make the best choices for preventive care. Knowing your family history is an important first step, but testing can give you a more accurate picture of your risk.

Q. Do recommend testing for everyone?

A. While testing is the most accurate way to determine the risk of hereditary cancer, only people who have cancer in their family or a personal history of the disease need to be tested. If cancer runs in your family, let your healthcare professional know. To help you assess whether you may be benefit from hereditary cancer genetic testing, take the Myriad Hereditary Cancer Quiz. This simple, 30-second quiz can help you get the information you need to discuss your risk of cancer with your healthcare professional and ask for further evaluation.

Q. How do I get tested?

A. Ask your healthcare professional if testing is right for you. If so, your healthcare professional will draw a small amount of your blood or take a saliva sample and send it to Myriad Genetic Laboratories for analysis.

Q. How long does it take to get the test results?

A. Your healthcare professional will let you know your test results as soon as they are available, which may be as soon as two weeks from the date your test is performed.

Q. Does a positive test result mean that I have cancer?

A. No. Genetic testing does not tell you if you currently have cancer. Your test results will tell you about your inherited risk of developing cancer in the future.

Q. Does a positive test result mean that I will definitely develop cancer?

A. No. Genetic testing does not tell you whether you will develop cancer. A positive test result simply tells you that you have an increased risk of cancer.

Q. How do I know if my health insurance will cover hereditary cancer testing? I don’t even know where to start.

A. Most insurance carriers cover genetic testing services for hereditary cancer that are ordered by healthcare professionals. In fact, although each situation is unique, the average patient pays coinsurance of less than 10 percent of the test price. Myriad works directly with your insurance provider to get reimbursement for the genetic tests we offer. We have significant experience in dealing with the reimbursement issues that may be important to you.

Q. What kinds of payment plans do you offer?

A. If you receive a bill from Myriad, we are extremely flexible. We routinely offer an interest-free 25 month payment plan when your co-insurance, deductible or uncovered services will cost $375 or more. (That’s roughly $15 per month, with zero interest.) Our friendly staff will happily find a way to make the payments work for you.

Q. What if I don’t have any health insurance at all?

A. You can pay for the testing service yourself. If needed, we can set up an installment payment plan that is practical for you. We can even offer testing at no charge to uninsured patients in the U.S. who meet specific financial and medical criteria. Due to regulatory limitations, patients who are recipients of government-funded programs like Medicaid and Medicare are not eligible to apply for this assistance.

Learn more about our Financial Assistance Program.