Recently, Chris Hemsworth, star of the Avengers franchise, announced that he was “taking a break” after genetic tests revealed he was at a high risk of developing Alzheimer’s.
While it may be a difficult subject, it’s important to know the facts about genetic testing and how it can help you stay one step ahead of Alzheimer’s.
How Genetic Testing Works
Genetic testing analyzes a sample of your DNA. This is typically done through a saliva test but can also be completed with a blood or cheek swab sample.
It involves looking at specific sections of your genes that may indicate whether you are at risk for certain conditions, such as Alzheimer’s. The results of the test will give you an indication of your likelihood of developing the disease in the future.
The Value & Affordability of Genetic Testing
Genetic tests have many benefits. For example, predictive tests allow individuals at an increased risk of developing a certain condition to take proactive steps towards preventing or catching it early on.
On the other hand, diagnostic tests provide peace of mind by giving you a definitive answer regarding your health status. Family members can use the results from these tests to make informed decisions regarding their own health and lifestyle choices moving forward.
Regarding affordability, several options are available depending on your needs and budget. You may use direct-to-consumer services such as 23andMe® or try subsidized services through your healthcare provider or employer.
The Risk of Genetic Testing
Genetic testing can provide false positives or false negatives. False positives occur when an individual has tested positive for a gene mutation that they do not actually have. In contrast, false negatives occur when someone tests negative for a gene mutation that they do actually have. Some people may also experience emotional distress or feel burdened after receiving their results.
Additionally, the results from these tests may lead to discrimination when applying for jobs or various forms of insurance coverage.
It’s important to consider these risks before deciding whether or not genetic testing is right for you.