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The risks involved in the majority of genetic testing are relatively small, especially for the tests that require a quick blood draw or buccal sample. Prenatal screening for genetic disorders carries a small risk for miscarriage, as a sample of amniotic fluid is required to complete the test. Other risks may include feelings of anxiousness or guilt pertaining to the results. Genetic testing has the potential to reveal information about other family members, in addition to the person tested, which can create additional emotional stress.
The benefits of genetic screening can far exceed the risks, as the results can sweep away the stress of uncertainty, and help people make informed decisions regarding their heath. A negative result can prevent scheduling unnecessary future check-ups and screenings, and a positive result can help a person find preventative care and treatment options. Prenatal and newborn screenings help identify disorders early on, so medical intervention can start as soon as possible to limit future complications. The results, whether positive or negative, empower you to manage your health and make informed medical decisions.