3 Lessons Learned:

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Who Needs a Genetic Test?

Doctors determine defective genes to help them diagnose health conditions that one is likely to develop by taking the person through genetic testing. Small samples of tissues of fluid from the body are tested during a genetic test.

Genetic testing (amniocentesis or chorionic villus sampling) that is conducted on a 15 to 20 weeks expectant mothers is a blood test that determines genetic disorders that may affect the unborn baby. The baby’s gender and genetic problems that may affect it are determined by inserting a hollow syringe into the abdomen of the woman, and a small amount of amniotic fluid is drawn from the area near the fetus for testing.

When doctors find out that the fetus might not survive full-term development they perform amniocentesis to determine how mature the lungs of the fetus are to prepare for premature birth, but they are cautious because the procedure can provoke a miscarriage. Chorionic villus sampling is done on a 10 to 12 weeks pregnancy whereby a small piece of the placenta is removed for genetic testing on the fetus. The procedure can trigger a miscarriage. Who must undergo a genetic test?

A lady who has experienced two or more miscarriages needs a genetic test. There is a high chance of a miscarriage if the fetus develops specific chromosome problems.

Most of the children who have genetic health conditions are born of older parents hence doctors strongly insist on genetic testing for older parents. In most cases, children who have new dominant genetic mutations are born of older fathers. Chromosomal problem s mostly affect children who are born of women who are 34 years and above.

A genetic test is essential to a woman who has delivered a stillborn child who has physical signs of a genetic illness. The baby may be born alive but if it has severe birth defects the mother needs a genetic test although other causes of birth defects include poison or toxic substances, physical trauma or infection before delivery.

If one of the parents has a relative who has an inherited disease, the parent has to be tested to determine if he or she is a carrier of the genetic illness or not. Your baby will not be born with the genetic disease because the doctors will do all they can to protect it. You may not show signs of the disease if you are a carrier because it is a recessive gene in you, but the gene can be transferred to the child. The child will not show the signs and symptoms of the disease if it inherits the recessive gene and a normal dominant gene from the other parent, but the recessive gene may be inherited by its children.

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