What are the Pros of Genetic Screening?

Debra Durkee
Debra Durkee

Genetic screening can be done on any individual, and serves a variety of different purposes. The pros of genetic screening, when done on unborn babies, can include determining the presence of genetic disorders ahead of time so parents are prepared to give the child the most complete care from birth. Genetic testing can also tell an individual if he or she is predisposed to developing an inherited condition, allowing for preventative care to be taken before symptoms develop.

Genetic screening can identify predispositions to disease.
Genetic screening can identify predispositions to disease.

Many inherited conditions have genetic markers within an individual's DNA. One of the pros of genetic screening is the ability to detect these genes and determine whether or not the individual will likely develop a disease passed down through the family. While some may not want to know if they have the markers for disease, knowing well in advance can allow the individual to take preventative measures early in life to help delay or avoid the development of such conditions.

Genetic screening can prepare parents in advance if their child might need special care.
Genetic screening can prepare parents in advance if their child might need special care.

Similarly, there can also be pros of genetic screening for individuals even if they are not concerned about developing an inherited disease themselves. Some diseases are recessive, and even if they do not show up in one individual, they can be passed on to children. Genetic testing for couples considering having children may help determine whether or not there is the possibility of passing on genetic disorders to offspring.

The procedure can also be done on an unborn baby. The pros of genetic screening procedures conducted on an unborn baby can help prepare parents for any difficulties that the child may face. A baby that tests positive for some degenerative conditions can be started on treatments from birth before symptoms manifest. Parents of children who test positive for various conditions can begin counseling and educational programs to learn how to manage their child and give the best treatment possible.

Another of the pros of genetic screening could be the benefit of a negative response for genetic markers of disorders and predisposition to develop some conditions. Couples who may have decided not to have children because of an inherited condition in the family may test negative for the gene and be able to comfortably conceive without the worry of passing on the condition. Genetic screening of parents can also help put children at ease with the knowledge that their parents have tested negative for a condition carried through other parts of the family.

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    • Genetic screening can identify predispositions to disease.
      Genetic screening can identify predispositions to disease.
    • Genetic screening can prepare parents in advance if their child might need special care.
      Genetic screening can prepare parents in advance if their child might need special care.