genetic testing

Usually genetic testing is ordered by a lab or a hospital are used to determine risk, diagnose or treat a disease. The tests will help doctors select the medication to treat the condition or disease. This is extremely valuable with different forms of cancer and rare diseases.

Reasons for wanting genetic testing

Couples planning to have children may be curious to know if they are carrying risk markers for conditions like cystic fibrosis or sickle cell anemia. Also, people with parents or siblings who’ve developed a genetic disorder may want to know if their chances of developing it. Individuals can request genetic counseling and testing. Counseling and testing is often not covered by insurance. The cost of genetic testing differs according to the type of test and the number of family members involved. Prices start around $100 and can exceed $2,000.

Genetic counselors

A genetic counselor is a healthcare professional with specialized training in medical genetics and counseling. They will talk to you about your family history, your medical history and help you determine your risk of developing several types of diseases. Genetic counselors will ask you:

Most people only visit a genetic counselor when they are having difficulty getting pregnant. Genetic counselors are trained to troubleshoot infertility but are also trained to provide a thorough interpretation of your genetic results. When you purchase a genetic testing kit, you probably won’t have access to a genetic counselor, you’ll be left to interpret the results on your own.

Best genetic testing kit

There are several types of genetic testing kits. Each kit has a specific focus.

  • 23 and Me focuses on Genetic Health Risks based on your DNA
  • Vitagene testing kit allows you to learn which foods, fitness routines, supplements, and types of diets are best for you according to your DNA
  • Ancestry helps predict your genetic ethnicity and help you find new family connections
  • MyHeritage helps you determine ethnic origins and so you can find new relatives
  • African Ancestry can identify a specific region in African and a specific African ethnic group.

When choosing a kit

  1. Understand the different types of genetic tests available and what exactly they scan for before taking the test, so you can be prepared for the outcomes.
  2. Continue the dialogue with your doctor. This is very important. Talk to your doctor about your health risks and develop a plan to decrease these risks.