Genetic Counseling

Genetic counseling is a health service which provides all the necessary information to patients with a genetic disorder or to people who are under risk for a genetic disorder. The necessary information includes;The risk of that genetic disorder to develop in the person himself/herself and his/her family. The stages and outcomes of that certain genetic disorder. If possible, information about applicable genetic tests and prenatal tests. The information that is required to reduce the risk of that disorder treatment options and psychological support that is necessary to handle the existing and future outcomes of that disorder. Genetic counseling is a key source of information about a certain disorder for other health specialists, patients, and public.

If health professionals observe a symptom or suspect the presence of a certain disease in a patient, they should direct the patient to genetic counseling or a genetics specialist. A genetics specialist can; Provide information about the existing genetic disorder.Ask for a detailed pedigree analysis. Offer a suitable genetic test. Provide information about the treatment of that disorder .Provide information about the long-term outcomes of that disorder. Provide information about suitable drugs and their effects. Direct the patient to another health specialist after providing the necessary information

For the ideal clarification of genetic disorders, these steps should be followed in genetic counseling:

  • Obtainment of a detailed family history and construction of a pedigree
  • Physical examination of the patient and/or interpretation of the results
  • Clinical laboratory tests and/or interpretation of the results
  • Pre-diagnosis
  • Genetic tests
  • Genetic diagnosis
  • Providing information about the results to the patient
  • Providing information about the treatment to the patient
  • Follow-up of the patient
  • Screening of the family members who are under risk
  • Recommendation of prenatal tests for the people in the family who plan for marriage and/or pregnant women in the family

Genetic testing can have emotional, social, pshycological and financial risks as well. Discuss all risks and benefits of genetic testing with a medical geneticist or a genetic counselor before you have a genetic test.