Also known as: medical genetic counseling.
What is genetic counseling?
Genetic counseling is a counseling session for parents or prospective parents to help them understand their risk of passing along genes and birth defects to children. Because sickle cell disease is the most common genetic disorder in the U.S., it is extremely important that patients and families are offered testing and counseling for both sickle cell trait and sickle cell disease.
What happens during the treatment?
A certified genetic counselor will meet with the prospective parents and discuss the possible risks of genetic disorders to their children. They’ll also discuss the details of these potential diseases and how they can impact the baby’s life. The risks the counselors discuss will be based on the parents’ risks based on family history or genetic testing, or the baby’s risk based on prenatal testing.
Is any special preparation needed?
No special preparation is needed. Parents can get genetic counseling at any time during or before a pregnancy.
What are the risk factors?
There are no risk factors related to genetic counseling.
Reviewed by: Athena C Pefkarou, MD
This page was last updated on: November 06, 2020 12:21 PM
Learn more about
Birth Defects and Congenital Anomalies
Any unusual physical feature or health problem that is present at the birth of a baby is known as a birth defect or a congenital anomaly.
Genetic diseases are conditions that occur due to a mutation in a gene in the body’s cells.