23 doctors weighed in:

Is it a good idea to obtain a genetic test using 23andme? It would be good to know what major diseases, such as breast cancer, I am vulnerable to.

23 doctors weighed in
Dr. Pam Yoder
Obstetrics & Gynecology - Maternal Fetal Medicine
15 doctors agree

In brief: Not a parlour game

A person should not undertake such testing without thinking about the impact now and in the future.
I refer patients considering obtaining special testing or their genome to a genetic counselor or medical geneticist. Either can determine optimal testing for most patients and discuss details of what, where, when and how much to do. Nb: through rock health there's a connection between our founders.

In brief: Not a parlour game

A person should not undertake such testing without thinking about the impact now and in the future.
I refer patients considering obtaining special testing or their genome to a genetic counselor or medical geneticist. Either can determine optimal testing for most patients and discuss details of what, where, when and how much to do. Nb: through rock health there's a connection between our founders.
Dr. Pam Yoder
Dr. Pam Yoder
Thank
4 comments
Dr. Scott McLean
The new world of personal genomics and direct-to-consumer genetic testing is simultaneously exciting and sobering. 23andMe does not sell medical tests - their tests are not substitutes for traditional medical care. But they can be important adjuncts. Why don't you create a detailed pedigree at http://www.hhs.gov/familyhistory/ or http://www.geneticalliance.org/fhh and discuss with your doctor.
Dr. Pam Yoder
Thanks, Dr. McLean.
Dr. Pam Yoder
Obstetrics & Gynecology - Maternal Fetal Medicine
5 doctors agree

In brief: Family want to know?

Your question is a very important one.
A person should not undertake such testing without thinking about the impact on family members also. I highly recommend that my patients considering obtaining special testing or their genome speak with a genetic counselor or medical geneticist. We have some prominent physicians on healthtap who have board certification in genetics. I will refer this to them.

In brief: Family want to know?

Your question is a very important one.
A person should not undertake such testing without thinking about the impact on family members also. I highly recommend that my patients considering obtaining special testing or their genome speak with a genetic counselor or medical geneticist. We have some prominent physicians on healthtap who have board certification in genetics. I will refer this to them.
Dr. Pam Yoder
Dr. Pam Yoder
Thank
Dr. Joseph Woods
Pathology
2 doctors agree

In brief: Too early to say.

This is a company that seems to have been created for this purpose.
Having said that, i don't think they have the experience of interpretation that medical services, like karyotyping in cytogenetics provide. These are done only when warranted by sickness. It is also important to know that genetic discrimination can occur from this, which might lead to problems. More planning may be needed.

In brief: Too early to say.

This is a company that seems to have been created for this purpose.
Having said that, i don't think they have the experience of interpretation that medical services, like karyotyping in cytogenetics provide. These are done only when warranted by sickness. It is also important to know that genetic discrimination can occur from this, which might lead to problems. More planning may be needed.
Dr. Joseph Woods
Dr. Joseph Woods
Thank
Dr. Randy Baker
Holistic Medicine

In brief: It depends on you!

I believe genetic testing will be an extremely important and standard tool in the future.
There is evidence that tests like this can tell whether you are more or less susceptible to many diseases. That said, genetics alone do not determine health risks; diet and lifestyle often play a larger role; fortunately, 23andme acknowledges this & discusses what is known about this. Please see my comment:.

In brief: It depends on you!

I believe genetic testing will be an extremely important and standard tool in the future.
There is evidence that tests like this can tell whether you are more or less susceptible to many diseases. That said, genetics alone do not determine health risks; diet and lifestyle often play a larger role; fortunately, 23andme acknowledges this & discusses what is known about this. Please see my comment:.
Dr. Randy Baker
Dr. Randy Baker
Thank
2 comments
Dr. Randy Baker
One thing this test can not determine is epigenetics- we have 2 copies of each gene; often one is more functional than the other and diet & lifestyle can determine the extent to which each copy is read! The info in the test can be useful if you understand its limitations and want to be proactive in reducing your risks; but for some it may cause needless anxiety!
Dr. Joseph Woods
Thanks a lot for this great expansion on my answer.
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