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View Diary: Googling your own genome (15 comments)

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  •  Pluses and minuses (2+ / 0-)
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    nchristine, kurt

    I know someone who found out by using it that she had hemachromatosis, which ended up saving her from some potentially serious liver damage, so there are some good things that have come out of it. But I agree, there are medical privacy questions about it as well.

    •  Do you know enough about hemochromatosis?.. (0+ / 0-)

      Clinical diagnosis of hemochromatosis is not made based on ones' genome. Hemochromatosis manifests in high level of iron in blood and first step is to do a blood test and check what are the iron levels (the are several different factors). If that is the case further studies have to be done to see if there was accumulation of iron in liver and possibly other organs. The best treatment is phlebotomy and women actually have an advantage because of the periods. It is hard to say whether in case of your friend diagnosis is false or correct. It would be best for her to consult her physician instead of jumping to conclusion. This could be exactly the argument why consumers should not be self diagnosing using genetic tests, but consult their primary care physician who, if necessary, refer them to a specialist. Lawyers often use a proverb  "a man who is his own lawyer has a fool for his client". It is equally applicable to doctor - patient relations.

      •  That is (0+ / 0-)

        pretty much what happened. She got the results, then saw a doctor and had some tests that indicated she needed treatment. She was asymptomatic at the time but the test caught it shortly before it could have caused serious damage apparently.

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