Is genetic counseling for you?

genetic-counselorAnyone who has unanswered questions about diseases or traits that run in the family should consider genetic counseling. People who may find it valuable include:
• Those who have, or are concerned that they might have, an inherited disorder or birth defect.

• Women who are pregnant or planning to be after age 35.

• Couples who already have a child with mental retardation, an inherited disorder or a birth defect.

• Couples whose infant has a genetic disease diagnosed by routine newborn screening.

• Women who have had babies who died in infancy or three or more miscarriages.

• People concerned that their jobs, lifestyles or medical history may pose a risk to outcome of pregnancy. Common causes of concern include exposure to radiation, medications, illegal drugschemicals  or infections.

• Couples who would like testing or more information about genetic conditions that occur frequently in their ethnic group.

• Couples who are first cousins or other close blood relatives.

• Pregnant women whose ultrasound examinations or blood testing indicate that their pregnancy may be at increased risk for certain complications or birth defects.

If you think you could benefit from genetic counseling, call your local chapter of the March of Dimes, or send an email to Askus@marchofdimes.org, for information on services in your area.

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