Objective: The objective of this study was to evaluate satisfaction with genetic counseling for BRCA1 and BRCA2 (BRCA1/2) mutations among African American women.
Methods: Participants were 54 African American women at moderate and high risk for BRCA1/2 mutations who were offered genetic testing as part of a randomized clinical trial designed to compare the effects of culturally tailored genetic counseling (CTGC) and standard genetic counseling (SGC). Satisfaction with genetic counseling was evaluated using a self-administered questionnaire following culturally tailored or standard pre-test education and counseling.
Results: Overall, the majority of women (96%) were very satisfied with genetic counseling; however, only 26% reported that their worries were lessened and 22% reported that they were able to cope better. Women who received CTGC were significantly more likely than women who received SGC to report that their worries were lessened (p<0.05). In addition, women with household incomes less than US$ 35,000 were significantly more likely to report that the counselor lessened their worries compared to women with higher incomes (p<0.05).
Conclusions: Most African American women were satisfied with genetic counseling; however, women who received culturally tailored genetic counseling were significantly more likely to strongly agree that their worries were lessened compared to women who received standard genetic counseling.
Practice implications: Discussion of cultural beliefs and values during genetic counseling may be beneficial to African American women, especially those with low incomes.