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Understanding Gene Testing

What is the role of genetic counseling?

In the sophisticated programs that are pioneering predictive genetic tests for cancer, genetic counseling plays a vital role. Persons considering genetic testing meet with specially trained health professionals before testing begins, when they receive the test results, and in the weeks and months afterwards.

Before testing, the counselors try to make sure that the person is psychologically prepared to cope with the possibility of a positive test, and that he or she has enough balanced information to be able to formulate a truly informed consent. If the person decides to proceed with testing, counselors help the individual and the family adjust to the test results, and they help them arrange whatever prevention and screening measures are appropriate.

counselling test results

Genetic counselors are trained to help persons as they consider testing, when they receive the results, and in the weeks and months afterward.

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