Family history is the object of fear that ' I also can get sick too'. However, the family history can be viewed as a "positive sign" that can be used to identify and cope with certain diseases in addition to health check-ups. Lets find out what family history is referred to as a tag along with a life threatening disease like cancer and how to cope with it.

Cancer is family history even if only one member of the family is present.

Several years ago, Hollywood star Angelina Jolie had attention with her mastectomy. As a result of her genetic test, she inherited the genes of her mother who died from suffering from ovarian cancer and had a high likelihood of developing breast and ovarian cancer so she underwent a mastectomy for the purpose of prevention since then among people with a family history of cancer, interest in cancer genetics has been hot. When talking about the heritability of cancer, the expression "Family history" is often used. When I get a checkup at the hospital, I often ask about my family history. At this time, the definition of heredity and family history is different so a distinction is necessary. Heritability has the same specific genetic problem so Angelina jolie is the case in which cancer is passed down. On the other hand, family history defines these genetic factors as well as environment factors including lifestyle. In medical terms., it means two or more patients with the same disease within the immediate family or cousin or three generations' However, it is easy to know wheher or not a couis ha cancer so the family history is often identified by asking whether or not the cancer has occurred, mainly from the three generations of immediate family members. A reparesentative study of the family history of cancer is a joint study between the Swedish and German Cancer Research Centers, published in 2004. As a result of a survey of 10 million Swedish people, their immediate family history and cancer risk, if their parents have cancer, their risk of developing cancer is 1.8 to 2.9 times in stomack, colon, breast and lung cancer and siblings with cancer. It was 2.0~3.1 times more likely and 3.3-12.7times more cases in which both parents and siblings ahd the same cancer.

The reason is that the family history between siblings is stronger than that of parents is analyzed because siblings of the same generation share environmental factors that cause cancre. Although ths memeber cannot be applied to Koreans as it is, it is advisable to start regular checkups early if only one in three generations of immediate family has cancer, even if they look at the results of domestic studies.

How to cope with a family history of cancer

'Cancer is counted as the numbe one cause of death for Koreans. If you have a family history of cancer, how should you deal with it? Gastric cancer has a 2.9 times greater risk of developing cancer in people with only a family history but those witha family history and Helicobacterbacteria are 5.3 times more likely to develop gastric cancer, and those with a history of smoking are 4.9times more likely to develop cancer.

The risk of colorectal cancer increases three to four times or more if the parent is a colorectal cancer patient, and if there is a colorectal cancer patient among siblings the risk increases by as much as 7 times. The more patients with colon cancer among parents or siblings, the earlier the onset is under 45 years of age, the stronger the genetic factor, so colonoscopy should be performed from the age of 40. It is reported that regular colonoscopy reduces the risk of dying from colon cancer by 70%. In addition, genetic testing is necessary if there are more than two breast cancer patients in the family, In this case, about 20% ahd a gene(BRCA1.2)mutation and a Canadian study found that the incidence of breast cancer in people with the BRCA1.2 mutation was 50~85%. In the United State, when a breast cancer gene abnormality is detected, famoxifen a breast cancer drung, is taken for preventive purposes or the breast is remoed in advance. Breastfeeding can also help suppress the onset of family history. According to a survey of 60,000 nurses by the North carolina Medical School in the United States, it was found that women with breast cancer who had mothers breast-feeding after giving birth were less likely develop breast cancer later. Ovarian cancer is correlated with breast cancer and family history because mutations in the BRCA1-2 gene are involved in the development of both cancers. According to a study by the National Cancer Center in the United States, a family history of breast cancer doubled the risk of ovarian cancer. If a mother or sister had breast cancer, the risk of developing ovarian cancer was as high as 40%. Similarly , a family history of ovarian cancer increases the risk of developing breast cancer. Ovarian cancer decreases the risk of developing ovarian cancer witha longer period of anovulation such as having more pregnancy and childbirth experiences or prolonged breastfeeding. If you have a family history of lung cancer, your risk of developing lung cancer is 2-3 times higher. Long-term smokers of 10 years or more with  family history should have low-dose chest CT(Computed tomography) once a year starting before age 40. This is because it is difficult to detect early lung cancer with a normal chest X-ray. Men with a family history of prostate cancer have a 4.5 to 8 times higher risk of prostate cancer so if they have a family history, it is recommended that they receive a PSA(Prostate Specific Antigen)test from 40 years of age. if  person with a family history of gallbladder cancer develops gallstones, the gallbladder is removed prophylactically. If you do not have a gallbladder resection, it is recommended to have a gallbladder cancer screening every 6 months to a year.

Diseases with a family history other than cancer

-High blood pressure

 Brothers and sisters have a stronger family history than their parents. A study found that 29.3% of Korean adults with both parents and high blood pressure are hypertensive and 57A% of those with high blood pressure in their siblings have high blood pressure themselves(NAtional Health and Nutrition Survey). If both parents ahve high blood pressure, but it cannot be interpreted to mean that Koreans have less family history than in the West. If you have a family history, regualr exercise and a low-sodium diet are important. Instead of salty, it is better to use spices or vinegar to enhance the sour or spicy taste.


In the west, if one of the parents is diabetic, the child's incidence rate is 15-20% and for both parents, the incidence rate is considered to be 30-40%. It is estimated that there will be no significant difference from the Western family history due to the westernization of Korean dietary life. If you have a family history, you should pay more attention to weight management. There is a study showing that obese people with a family history were diagnosed with diabetes at an average of 49.3 years, and were 8 years earlier than those without a family history(57years old).

-Cardiovascular Disease

Research shows that those whose parents had a heart attack had a 1.5 times higher risk of having a heart attack than those without a familoy history. It is said that the risk of arteriosclerosis in children is doubled if men develop atherosclerosis before their 40s and women before their 50s. If you had such a family history, it is recommended to take a blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol test once a year starting in your early 30s and an electrocardiogram once a year starting your 40s. People with high blood pressure or diabete should have an evercise load electrocardiogram every 1-2 years.


if parents have Alzheimer's dementia, their children are twice as likely to develop Alzheimer's dementia in old age. Alzheimer's dementia in old age. Alzheimer;s dementia is related to a gene called apolipoprotein type 4, which increases the risk of 2.7times if you inherit one and 17.4 times if you inherit two. if you have a family history, it is necessary to check the possibility of developing dementia with blood tests in old age.