Familial: a condition where there is a strong family history, but there is not an identified genetic cause.
Family history: Information about health and medical issues in relatives. Family history is one of the most important tools a genetic counselor uses to identify genetic risk. Patterns of specific health issues in an individual’s family history are useful to determine the risk of disease and appropriate genetic testing options.
Genetic Counselor: a healthcare professional who has training in genetics and counseling who works alongside doctors, nurses, or other members of your healthcare team. Genetic counselors assess your medical history and family history to determine if you are at risk for a genetic or hereditary condition and discuss the implications of available genetic testing options.
Genetic risk: the contribution our genes play in the chance that we will develop a certain illness or condition.
Multifactorial conditions: medical conditions caused by multiple genetic contributions in addition to the environment.
Pedigree: a family tree using established symbols. Genetic counselors use pedigrees to review the family history and look for patterns that might suggest a risk for genetic disorders or health-related conditions in the family.
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