If you are pregnant or considering becoming pregnant and have personal or family history of certain genetic diseases, you may wish to consider genetic counseling.
As a member of your healthcare team, the prenatal genetic counselor will
- Assess your risk or rule out having a child with a birth defect or genetic condition.
- Talk with you about your family and medical histories.
- Explain the causes of genetic conditions and help you understand the risks.
- Review and discuss options for prenatal screening and testing.
- Prepare you for the birth of a child with special needs and discuss the challenges your baby may face.
- Offer guidance to help you make informed choices.
Prenatal genetic counseling should be considered if you have any of the following risk factors.
- Family or personal history of birth defects or genetic conditions.
- Previous child with a birth defect or genetic disorder.
- Abnormal results from routine prenatal testing.
- Two or more pregnancy losses, a stillbirth, or a baby who died
- Use of certain medicines around the time of conception
- Diabetes before getting pregnant
- Other test results that suggest a genetic condition is present
- A woman who is pregnant or plans to become pregnant at 35 years or older
- Increased risk of getting or passing on a genetic disorder because of one's ethnic background