The Doctor Is In: Genetic Testing

Content provided by Beaumont Health

The Food and Drug Administration recently approved at-home DNA testing kits, bypassing the need for doctors or genetic counselors. These include rare diseases such as Factor XI deficiency, Gaucher disease type 1 and Celiac disease. Patients can also choose to be tested for Late-onset Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease.  Two experts from Beaumont Health say  at home genetic test results are just one piece of the puzzle and don't ultimately mean you'll develop the disease. 


Julie Zenger Hain, Ph.D., Director, Clinical Cytogenetics, Beaumont Hospital, Dearborn
Emily Swan, MS, CGC, Certified Genetic Counselor, Beaumont

Julie Zenger Hain, Ph.D., Director, Clinical Cytogenetics and Emily Swan, Certified Genetic Counselor Beaumont say meeting with a genetics expert is important because they will look at the family health history and can interpret the results.  They add conversations with a health care provider are important, not just receiving a results report via email.   The goal of testing should be to change behavior to improve health outcomes. For example, testing for a blood clot disorder can put you on alert hand help you make lifestyle changes to decrease your risk.  Zenger Hain says early detection is key and that’s why it’s important to have a relationship with a physician.

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