Journal of Genetic Counseling

, Volume 16, Issue 3, pp 325–339 | Cite as

Development and Pilot Testing of Two Decision Aids for Individuals Considering Genetic Testing for Cancer Risk

  • Claire E. Wakefield
  • Bettina Meiser
  • Judi Homewood
  • Michelle Peate
  • Judy Kirk
  • Beverley Warner
  • Elizabeth Lobb
  • Clara Gaff
  • Kathy Tucker
Original Research


Current practice in genetic counseling may not allow a full deliberation of the consequences of decisions about genetic testing for cancer risk, despite increasing demand for these services. Thus, two decision aids for individuals considering genetic testing for hereditary breast/ovarian cancer and hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC) susceptibility were developed and pilot tested with 43 individuals who had previously considered genetic testing for these cancer syndromes. A description of the decision aid development process is provided, as well as results of the pilot testing, which assessed participants’ perceptions of the decision aids. All participants reported that they would recommend the decision aid to others facing the same situation, and 93% reported that the decision aid would have been relevant during their decision-making. The perceived impact of the decision aids on participants’ emotions and understanding of genetic testing were assessed. Limitations of the study and future directions are discussed.


decision aids genetic testing hereditary breast cancer HNPCC 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Claire E. Wakefield
    • 1
    • 2
    • 9
  • Bettina Meiser
    • 2
    • 3
  • Judi Homewood
    • 1
  • Michelle Peate
    • 2
  • Judy Kirk
    • 4
  • Beverley Warner
    • 5
  • Elizabeth Lobb
    • 6
  • Clara Gaff
    • 7
  • Kathy Tucker
    • 2
    • 8
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyMacquarie UniversitySydneyAustralia
  2. 2.Department of Medical OncologyPrince of Wales HospitalRandwickAustralia
  3. 3.School of PsychiatryThe University of New South WalesRandwickAustralia
  4. 4.Familial Cancer Service, Westmead HospitalWestmeadAustralia
  5. 5.Cabrini HospitalMalvernAustralia
  6. 6.WA Center for Cancer & Palliative CareSchool of Nursing, Midwifery and Postgraduate Medicine, Edith Cowan UniversityPerthAustralia
  7. 7.Genetic Health Services Victoria and Royal Melbourne HospitalParkvilleAustralia
  8. 8.Prince of Wales Clinical SchoolUniversity of New South WalesRandwickAustralia
  9. 9.Department of Medical OncologyPrince of Wales Hospital, RandwickSydneyAustralia

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