Genetic testing involves examining your DNA; which is the set of instructions you inherit from your mother and your father, for your body’s functions.
Genetic tests may be used to identify increased risks of health problems, to choose treatments, or to assess responses to treatments. Nevertheless, if you're a healthy person, a positive result from genetic testing doesn't always mean you will develop a disease. On the other hand, in some situations, a negative result doesn't guarantee that you won't have a certain disorder.
What can you learn from testing?There are many different types of genetic tests. Genetic tests can help to:
Identify gene changes that are responsible for an already diagnosed disease
Determine the severity of a disease
Guide doctors in deciding on the best medicine or treatment to use for certain individuals
Identify gene changes that may increase the risk to develop a disease
Identify gene changes that could be passed on to children
Screen newborn babies for certain treatable conditions
Sonika is a Genetic Counselor from Melbourne, Australia who has worked in this region for over 4 years. During this time, she has helped raise awareness about the application and integration of genetic testing into disease prevention.