As Americans, we rely on medication, and for understandable reasons. Medication can treat illnesses that are both physical and mental. For example, between 2015 and 2018, 13.2% of American adults used prescription antidepressants within 30 days. Though women represented a higher percentage of medication users at 17.7% compared to men at 8.4%, it’s clear that medication matters to Americans.
But medication isn’t as valuable, perhaps, when it’s not tailored to fit the individual. This is troubling no matter what the patient’s condition, but it’s especially alarming when they’re at risk of or suffering from something like heart disease. This is why many doctors now recommend genetic testing for heart disease as a part of a personalized approach to medicine. If you’re not familiar with this genetic testing, you may have questions about how to proceed. With that in mind, let’s look into how genetic testing for heart disease works.
How Do I Know If I Need Genetic Testing for Heart Disease?
Sometimes, genetic testing for heart disease is ordered after you report a certain amount of symptoms to doctors. These can include everything from shortness of breath and chest pains to serious, chronic health issues. At that point, a doctor may be worried about heart disease and may wish to order genetic testing in order to rule out certain risk factors.
Conversely, you could know already that your family has a history of heart disease. But that doesn’t mean you’ve inherited the genetic variants connected to heart disease. Therefore, it may be a good idea for you to undergo genetic testing to determine how serious your risk factors are.
How Does Genetic Testing Work Physically?
On the surface, genetic testing for heart disease may sound intimidating. But don’t worry; you won’t have to undergo a serious physical test in order to rule out heart diseases. Usually, the physical aspects of testing are no more invasive than a simple blood test. Firstly, the gene variant may be identified through a family member that is known for having heart disease. Then, your blood will be tested and compared to that individual’s blood.
During this time, you will often receive advice from a genetic counselor. They can help you not only make decisions about testing but help you handle your results. No matter what, remember that you aren’t alone in the process.
If you think you’re at risk of heart disease or would like to rule it out as a future issue for your health in terms of your genetic makeup, consider genetic testing for heart disease. Contact Personalized Genetic Testing to get started today.