The Importance of Family History

The US Surgeon General and the US Department of Health & Human Services has started a new initiative to collect family history. As some conditions are hereditary, this might help family physicians know who may be at risk for health problems. HHS also wants to call Thanksgiving "National Family History Day". You can find out more about their efforts on the HHS website.

I think this is a good program and I would encourage people to collect family geneology. It may not be so helpful for lymphoma prediction though. There are definite hereditary factors for lymphoma but these are not well established. In many cases, lymphoma may occur in a family with no lymphoma history whatsoever (like mine).

Interested in family history? There are lots of computer resources and books out there. Maybe a good holiday family activity.

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