Publications by authors named "Sarah Jane Noblin"

8 Publications

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The psychosocial effects of the Li-Fraumeni Education and Early Detection (LEAD) program on individuals with Li-Fraumeni syndrome.

Genet Med 2017 09 16;19(9):1064-1070. Epub 2017 Mar 16.

Department of Genetics, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas, USA.

Purpose: In the past 5 years, new screening protocols have been developed that provide improved cancer screening options for individuals with Li-Fraumeni syndrome (LFS). Very little has been published on the psychosocial impact of these screening protocols. The goals of this study were to determine how participation in screening impacts individuals psychosocially, to examine the benefits and drawbacks of screening, and to evaluate possible barriers to continued screening.

Methods: We performed a qualitative study consisting of semistructured phone interviews conducted from December 2015 to February 2016 with 20 individuals attending the LFS screening program at MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Results: Data analysis showed that benefits of screening include early detection, peace of mind, centralized screening, knowledge providing power, and screening making LFS seem more livable. Perceived drawbacks included logistical issues, difficulty navigating the system, screening being draining, and significant negative emotional reactions such as anxiety, fear, and skepticism. Regardless of the emotions that were present, 100% of participants planned on continuing screening in the program.

Conclusion: Our data indicate that the perceived benefits of screening outweigh the drawbacks of screening. Individuals in this screening program appeared to have improved psychosocial well-being because of their access to the screening program.Genet Med advance online publication 16 March 2017.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/gim.2017.8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5875687PMC
September 2017

Attitudes Towards Prenatal Genetic Counseling, Prenatal Genetic Testing, and Termination of Pregnancy among Southeast and East Asian Women in the United States.

J Genet Couns 2017 Oct 2;26(5):1041-1058. Epub 2017 Mar 2.

Genetic Counseling Program, The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston, Houston, TX, USA.

Recognizing the heterogeneity of the Asian population with regards to acculturation, education, health awareness, and cultural values is vital for tailoring culturally sensitive and appropriate care. Prior studies show that cultural values influence perceptions of genetics within Asian populations. The reputation of the family unit factors into decisions such as pregnancy termination and disclosure of family medical history, and the nondirective model of American genetic counseling may conflict with the historical Asian model of paternalistic health care. Previous studies also provide conflicting evidence regarding correlations between education, acculturation, age, and awareness and perceptions of genetic testing. The aims of this study were to describe attitudes towards prenatal genetics among Southeast and East Asian women living in the United States for varying amounts of time and to explore sociocultural factors influencing those attitudes. Twenty-three Asian women who were members of Asian cultural organizations in the United States were interviewed via telephone about their attitudes towards prenatal genetic counseling, prenatal genetic testing, and termination of pregnancy. Responses were transcribed and coded for common themes using a thematic analysis approach. Four major themes emerged. In general, participants: (1) had diverse expectations for genetic counselors; (2) tended to weigh risks and benefits with regards to genetic testing decisions; (3) had mixed views on termination for lethal and non-lethal genetic conditions; and (4) identified cultural factors which influenced testing and termination such as lack of available resources, societal shame and stigma, and family pressure. These findings may allow prenatal genetic counselors to gain a richer, more nuanced understanding of their Asian patients and to offer culturally tailored prenatal genetic counseling.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10897-017-0084-9DOI Listing
October 2017

2013 Review and Update of the Genetic Counseling Practice Based Competencies by a Task Force of the Accreditation Council for Genetic Counseling.

J Genet Couns 2016 10 23;25(5):868-79. Epub 2016 Jun 23.

Department of Internal Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA.

The first practice based competencies (PBCs) for the field of genetic counseling were adopted by the American Board of Genetic Counseling (ABGC), 1996. Since that time, there has been significant growth in established and new work settings (clinical and non-clinical) and changes in service delivery models and the roles of genetic counselors. These changes prompted the ABGC to appoint a PBC Task Force in 2011 to review the PBCs with respect to their current relevance and to revise and update them as necessary. There are four domains in the revised PBCs: (I) Genetics Expertise and Analysis (II) Interpersonal, Psychosocial and Counseling Skills (III) Education and (IV) Professional Development and Practice. There are 22 competencies, each clarified with learning objectives or samples of activities and skills; a glossary is included. New competencies were added that address genomics, genetic testing and genetic counselors' roles in risk assessment, education, supervision, conducting research and presenting research options to patients. With PBCs serving as the pre-defined abilities or outcomes of training, graduating genetic counselors will be well prepared to enter the field with a minimum level of skills and abilities. A description of the Task Force's work, key changes and the 2013 PBCs are presented herein.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10897-016-9984-3DOI Listing
October 2016

Perceptions of Latinas on the Traditional Prenatal Genetic Counseling Model.

J Genet Couns 2015 Aug 5;24(4):675-82. Epub 2014 Dec 5.

Genetic Counseling Program, The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Science at Houston, Houston, TX, 77030, USA,

The traditional genetic counseling model encompasses an individualized counseling session that includes the presentation of information about genes, chromosomes, personalized risk assessment, and genetic testing and screening options. Counselors are challenged to balance the provision of enough basic genetic information to ensure clients' understanding of the genetic condition in question with a personalized discussion of what this information means to them. This study explored the perceptions Latinas have about prenatal genetic counseling sessions and aimed to determine if they had preferences about the delivery of care. Data were collected through focus groups and one-on-one, semi-structured interviews of 25 Spanish speaking Latinas who received genetic counseling during their current pregnancy. We implemented grounded theory to evaluate participant responses, and were able to identify common emergent themes. Several themes were identified including an overall satisfaction with their prenatal genetic counseling appointment, desire for a healthy baby, peace of mind following their appointment, lack of desire for invasive testing, and faith in God. Several participants stated a preference for group genetic counseling over the traditional individual genetic counseling model. Our data indicate that Latinas value the information presented at prenatal genetic counseling appointments despite disinterest in pursuing genetic testing or screening and suggest that group prenatal genetic counseling may be an effective alternative to the traditional genetic counseling model in the Latina population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10897-014-9797-1DOI Listing
August 2015

Is it all Lynch syndrome?: An assessment of family history in individuals with mismatch repair-deficient tumors.

Genet Med 2015 Jun 23;17(6):476-84. Epub 2014 Oct 23.

1] Department of Clinical Cancer Genetics, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas, USA [2] The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston, Houston, Texas, USA.

Purpose: Mismatch repair-deficient (MMRD) colorectal cancer (CRC) and endometrial cancer (EC) may be suggestive of Lynch syndrome (LS). LS can be confirmed only by positive germ-line testing. It is unclear if individuals with MMRD tumors but no identifiable cause (MMRD+/germ-line-) have LS. Because LS is hereditary, individuals with LS are expected to have family histories of LS-related tumors. Our study compared the family histories of MMRD+/germ-line- CRC and/or EC patients with LS CRC and/or EC patients.

Methods: A total of 253 individuals with an MMRD CRC or EC from one institution were included for analysis in one of four groups: LS; MMRD+/germ-line-; MMRD tumor with variant of uncertain significance (MMRD+/VUS); and sporadic MSI-H (MMRD tumor with MLH1 promoter hypermethylation or BRAF mutation). Family histories were analyzed utilizing MMRpro and PREMM1,2,6. Kruskal-Wallis tests were used to compare family history scores.

Results: MMRD+/germ-line- individuals had significantly lower median family history scores (MMRpro = 8.1, PREMM1,2,6 = 7.3) than did LS individuals (MMRpro = 89.8, PREMM1,2,6 = 26.1, P < 0.0001).

Conclusion: MMRD+/germ-line- individuals have less suggestive family histories of LS than individuals with LS. These results imply that MMRD+/germ-line- individuals may not all have LS. This finding highlights the need to determine other causes of MMRD tumors so that these patients and their families can be accurately counseled regarding screening and management.Genet Med 17 6, 476-484.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/gim.2014.131DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4936192PMC
June 2015

Influence of anchoring on miscarriage risk perception associated with amniocentesis.

J Genet Couns 2015 Apr 17;24(2):278-84. Epub 2014 Sep 17.

Baptist Memorial Health Care Corporation, 2927 Tishomingo Lane, Memphis, TN, 38111, USA,

One factor women consider when deciding whether to pursue amniocentesis is the risk of miscarriage. People use mechanisms like anchoring, or the prior belief regarding the magnitude of risk, as a frame of reference for new information. This study aimed to determine a woman's perception of miscarriage risk associated with amniocentesis before and after genetic counseling and to determine what factors anchor a woman's perception of miscarriage risk. One hundred thirteen women being seen for prenatal genetic counseling and possible amniocentesis at six Houston clinics participated in the two-part anonymous survey. While most women (56.7 %) perceived the risk as low or average pre-counseling and indicated the numeric risk of amniocentesis as <1 %, significantly more patients (73 %) correctly identified the numeric risk as <1 % post-counseling (p < 0.0001). However, the majority of patients' qualitative risk perception did not change after the genetic counseling session (60 %). Those who changed their feeling about the risk after counseling showed a decreased perception of the risk (p < 0.0001). Participants who elected amniocentesis had a significantly lower perception of the risk (p = 0.017) whereas those who declined amniocentesis were more likely to view the risk as high (p = 0.004). The only two anchoring factors that had an effect were having a friend or relative with a personal or family history of a genetic disorder (p = 0.001) and having a child already (p = 0.038); both were associated with a lower risk perception. The lack of significant factors may reflect the uniqueness of each patient's risk assessment framework and reinforces the importance of genetic counseling to elucidate individual concerns, particularly as non-invasive prenatal testing becomes more widely available and further complicates the prenatal testing landscape.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10897-014-9761-0DOI Listing
April 2015

Exploring the role of religiosity and spirituality in amniocentesis decision-making among Latinas.

J Genet Couns 2011 Dec 22;20(6):660-73. Epub 2011 Jun 22.

Department of Pediatrics, Division of Medical Genetics, UT Health-The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Medical School, Houston, TX, USA.

Given the complex array of emotional and medical issues that may arise when making a decision about amniocentesis, women may find that their spiritual and/or religious beliefs can comfort and assist their decision-making process. Prior research has suggested that Latinas' spiritual and/or religious beliefs directly influence their amniocentesis decision. A more intimate look into whether Latinas utilize their beliefs during amniocentesis decision-making may provide an opportunity to better understand their experience. The overall goal of this study was to describe the role structured religion and spirituality plays in Latinas' daily lives and to evaluate how religiosity and spirituality influences health care decisions, specifically in prenatal diagnosis. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with eleven women who were invited to describe their religious beliefs and thoughts while considering the option of amniocentesis. All participants acknowledged the influence of religious and/or spiritual beliefs in their everyday lives. Although the women sought comfort and found validation in their beliefs and in their faith in God's will during their amniocentesis decision-making process, results suggest the risk of procedure-related complications played more of a concrete role than their beliefs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10897-011-9378-5DOI Listing
December 2011

Expanded newborn screening in Texas: a survey and educational module addressing the knowledge of pediatric residents.

Genet Med 2009 Mar;11(3):163-8

Division of Medical Genetics, Department of Pediatrics, The University of Texas Medical School at Houston, 64341 Fannin Street, Houston, TX 77030, USA.

Purpose: To assess the effectiveness of an educational module as a tool for improving the knowledge of pediatric residents about newborn screening and its expansion in Texas.

Methods: The study population consisted of 63 pediatric residents from the University of Texas at Houston, Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, and the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston. Residents were invited to participate in the study during daily scheduled didactic lectures in their respective residency programs. Questionnaires were distributed to the residents both before and after the presentation of an educational module about newborn screening in Texas to assess whether knowledge was gained from the presentation.

Results: Analysis of questionnaires from the full group of participants showed a substantial increase in knowledge about newborn screening in Texas after the presentation of the educational module. This included a 45.4% increase in knowledge about pre-expansion newborn screening conditions and a 308.4% increase in knowledge about expanded newborn screening conditions (P
Conclusions: Our results suggest that an educational module about newborn screening like the one we created for this study would be an effective tool for improving the knowledge of pediatric residents on a larger scale.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/GIM.0b013e3181930787DOI Listing
March 2009