Pharmacogenetics: A Brief Explanation

Our genes determine many of our physical characteristics and can tell us a story of our past and forefathers. From your eye colour to your blood type, and even the way your body responds to medication, genetic testing can provide you with the information you require to live the healthiest life for your unique body.

In this article, we will discuss pharmacogenetics, explain what it is, and how pharmacogenetic testing can benefit you.

What is Pharmacogenetic Testing?

Pharmacogenetic testing looks at genes which determines how you could react to certain medications based on your gene results.

By looking at the variation in your genes a pharmacogenomic test can determine if a specific and perhaps expensive drug will be effective when administered. When supplied with this information medical practitioners are able to design and personalise treatment regimes for certain diseases.

In addition to efficacy, pharmacogenetic testing may be used to:

  • Find out what the best dosage might be for you
  • Predict whether you will have a serious side effect from a medicine

Who Should Get Pharmacogenetic Testing?

A pharmacogenetic test will typically be advised by a professional medical practitioner before starting a treatment plan that is either urgent or expensive. They will also request a test if they have started treatment and it looks like the treatment isn’t having the desired effect.

How is a Pharmacogenetic Test Administered?

The test can be performed using a blood or a saliva sample. You can choose to travel to a practitioner or hospital that offers this test; otherwise, if one does not have easy access to a facility, one can order an at-home pharmacogenetic test. Gene-Rx is such a test and makes use of an easy-to-use and painless buccal (cheek) swab to perform the test. The test kit will be delivered to your door where you can perform the test in the comfort of your own home. You will then send the test off to the testing facility. After 4 weeks you should receive your results, after which you can discuss the results with a professional practitioner near you.

Contact one of our practitioners to find out more about how Geneway can assist you in becoming a healthier person by doing what is best for your specific genetic makeup.

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