How Can a Genetic Counselor Help?

There are many questions that can come up when thinking about whether or not to undergo genetic testing. If you are also considering any of these questions, it may be helpful to meet with a healthcare specialist, such as a genetic counselor, to gather more information.

Questions about the impact of genetic testing:

  • Can genetic testing help me or my family? If so, how?
  • How could genetic testing affect my insurance or employment?
  • Would I want to know if my infertility or multiple miscarriages were caused by an underlying genetic condition that I may or may not be able to do anything about?
  • Would additional options be available for having a baby if an underlying genetic reason for infertility and/or multiple miscarriages was found?
  • What if genetic testing is completed and an underlying genetic condition is not identified?
  • If I test positive for an underlying genetic condition, are there other health conditions that I need to be aware of that could show up later in life?
  • How could this information affect my family members? Would I want to share genetic testing results with family members?
  • Would having more information make me more anxious or nervous, or would it cause guilt or blame in my relationship?
  • If an underlying genetic condition is identified, would I consider alternative options for pregnancy, such as:
    • Additional diagnostic testing of embryos?
    • Alternative options for pregnancy, such as donor embryos, donor sperm, or donor eggs?
    • Adoption?

Questions specifically about genetic testing:

  • What are the overall risks, benefits, and limitations of specific genetic tests?
  • How accurate are genetic tests? Are some better than others?
  • I’ve already had direct-to-consumer genetic testing (such as 23&me, ancestry.com, etc). Are those different from other types of genetic testing?
  • How accurate is genetic testing for embryos?
  • What is the chance for a positive genetic test?
  • Are there additional genetic tests that I should be aware of?
  • Can these tests tell me if I’m for sure going to have a healthy baby?

 


Last updated on Mar 29th, 2018