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What is genetic testing?
Genetic testing is a type of medical test that identifies changes in chromosomes, genes, or proteins. The results of a genetic test can confirm or rule out a suspected genetic condition or help determine a person’s chance of developing or passing on a genetic disorder. More than 1,000 genetic tests are currently in use, and more are being developed.
Several methods can be used for genetic testing:
Genetic testing is voluntary. Because testing has benefits as well as limitations and risks, the decision about whether to be tested is a personal and complex one. A geneticist or genetic counselor can help by providing information about the pros and cons of the test and discussing the social and emotional aspects of testing.
For general information about genetic testing:
MedlinePlus offers a list of links to information about genetic
The National Human Genome Research Institute provides an overview of this topic in its Frequently Asked Questions About Genetic
The National Institutes of Health fact sheet Genetic Testing: What It Means for Your Health and for Your Family’s
Educational resources related to genetic
The Genetics and Public Policy Center also offers information about genetic
You can also search for clinical trials involving genetic testing.