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Genetic Carrier Screening

Benefits of Screening Genetics for Predisposed Conditions

Having children is a life-changing experience and understanding the health of your children and/or unborn child is important for the future life of your family.
  • Genetic carrier screening helps you as a parent, or future parent, by providing awareness of personalized DNA makeup and can accurately establish whether genetic mutations are found. 
  • If yourself or your partner are carrying certain gene mutations and plan to become parents, this testing helps you to determine how likely you may be for passing these mutated genes down to your children.
  • Delivers insight on the likelihood of your children developing conditions such as cystic fibrosis, spinal muscular atrophy, sickle cell diseases, and other similar conditions due to acquiring certain genes which are linked to these conditions.
  • Your genetic carrier screening may be covered for you through Medicaid or private insurance with little to no out of pocket costs. Medical records of your prior diagnoses assist in determining coverage.
Finding out if a future child, or an existing child, is vulnerable to developing a disease based on the inheritance of DNA can be a tough reality to face. Usually in these cases, it is helpful to gain knowledge beforehand to properly plan for the road ahead. By taking a carrier test, you and your partner can become emotionally prepared, and can plan to take steps to become financially prepared for having a child who may acquire a condition derived from your DNA.

How to Get Genetic Carrier Screening

  • A specialist from our company will speak with you to confirm if you are qualified to receive this carrier genetic screening.
  • Once you are qualified to receive this screening, we will send the necessary information to the doctor of your choice for authorization.
  • Upon approval from your provider, we will quickly ship your testing kit directly to your home.
  • The testing kit comes in the form of a non-invasive, buccal mouth swab, which can be completed in the comfort of your home, as opposed to a blood draw performed at an outside facility.
  • Simple to use, and we will have a dedicated specialist give you a call to walk you through how to complete the test.
  • Once your test is taken and your sample is sent to our lab, your results will then be generated and delivered to you.

Our genetics testing lab is located at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center on the campus of Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Your testing kit, which includes free, pre-paid shipping, will be shipped to our lab for processing upon performing the mouth swab test. This process can take as little as 2 weeks to run your sample and have your results distributed to yourself and your provider by mail. Once you have your results, you and your doctor can determine whether extra steps of preparation are necessary for birthing and raising a child. In addition, genetic counseling is available as an extra resource to you if help is needed for interpretation of your results.

 
 
 

What is The Study of Carrier Genetics

There are countless medical conditions that humans run the risk of developing
throughout their lifetime that stem from gene variations. These changes of the genes may reside in the body and go unnoticed for a long period of time, or potentially a person's whole life. Altered genes that are linked to genetic conditions run the possibility of being acquired by children through DNA transference.

DNA contains the instructions or codes that guide the body on how to grow and develop. Genes are composed of DNA and they are arranged on strings of information called chromosomes. Children are born with two copies of chromosomes, one from each birthing person, and one copy of each gene. Some genetic conditions are caused when mutations are found on both copies of a gene, and this is known as a recessive condition. People who have a recessive condition have inherited the same gene mutation from both parents. 
A carrier is a person who has only one copy of a mutated gene and the other the other gene copy is functioning properly. Once a person is discovered to be a carrier of a gene mutation, there is a chance of passing the mutation onto their children. If both parents are carriers of a matching gene mutation, they may produce a child with a harmful, life-long disease. Parents who are carriers of one or more mutated genes may have inherited them from previous generations in their bloodline and may or may not display symptoms associated with a disease.

How to Know if Carrier Genetic Screening Can Help You

As humans grow from adolescence into adulthood, the majority will plan on having children some day. Starting a family involves a process of carefully planning to be ready for this major life step. As part of this planning process, it is extremely important to review and gain an in-depth understanding of the health of the parents who will be giving birth to a new child.

Unfortunately, the health and wellness of new children may not always go according to highest expectations when considering pregnancy. At times, children are either born with a condition or will develop a condition at some point in their life, which affects their health and well-being in varying degrees. Many times these conditions can be traced back to the children's parents through changes that are discovered in their genetic makeup.
 
If you are planning on starting a family, or already have children, genetic carrier screening can help you understand the risks that your children may face when inheriting your genes. Many people have lived their whole lives without ever realizing that they are carriers. Of these people, the majority of them will have children at some point during their life. As these children get older, they will most likely plan on becoming parents of their own children one day as well. At any time, a child of parents who are carriers can develop a disease as a result of the DNA that they have inherited, and can even pass these harmful gene mutations down to their children as well. Therefore, carrier testing is a helpful tool for both parents and their children to gain awareness of whether or not their children are susceptible to acquiring a disease.
 

Testing Kit

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