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March 19-25, 2023: Lynch Syndrome Awareness Week

WHEREAS, Lynch syndrome is a hereditary condition that significantly increases the risk of several cancers, such as colon, endometrial, ovarian, stomach, brain, and some skin cancers, with diagnosis often occurring at a young age; and,

WHEREAS, it is estimated that 1 in 300 individuals in the United States have a genetic change that increases their risk for Lynch syndrome-related cancers. Genetic changes responsible for Lynch syndrome cause approximately 4,200 colorectal cancers and 1,800 endometrial cancers across the United States each year, often impacting families across generations; and,

WHEREAS, Lynch syndrome puts individuals at risk for a cancer diagnosis before age 50. In 2019, 12% of colorectal cancer diagnoses in the state of Michigan were among individuals younger than age 50; and,

WHEREAS, any individual diagnosed with colon or endometrial cancer should have their tumor screened for characteristics associated with Lynch syndrome, and referred to genetic counseling if necessary; and,

WHEREAS, knowing your family history of cancer, and talking about it with your health care provider can help determine if genetic counseling and/or genetic testing would be appropriate to prevent cancers associated with Lynch syndrome. Genetic counselors can assist in determining an appropriate treatment and screening protocol to manage risk if you have a family history of cancer or genetic testing shows an increased risk for cancer; and,

WHEREAS, during this week, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services joins with the Michigan Cancer Genetics Alliance and Lynch Syndrome International to raise awareness of Lynch syndrome. It is encouraged for all Michigan residents to gather their family health history, and to share this information with a health care provider for early detection and prevention of Lynch syndrome-related cancers;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gretchen Whitmer, governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim March 19 – 25, 2023, as Lynch Syndrome Awareness Week in Michigan.