Pacific Reproductive Center is pleased offer its patients the latest weapon to date in the war against birth defects: a coupling of technologies that will allow couples to avoid passing along more than 100 genetic diseases to newborn children.
- More than 80 percent of children with genetic disease are born to healthy parents who have no family history of those diseases. Carriers often will not develop any symptoms of the disease.
- This simple screening technique uses a saliva test – administered before pregnancy – to identify couples who are most at risk of bearing children with genetic diseases, along with an ultra high-tech biopsy process – conducted after conception – to help them deliver healthy babies. For some genetic conditions, if both parents are carriers of the same disease, their child will have a 25 percent chance of developing symptoms of the disease.
The tests can be applied to screening for debilitating and even fatal disorders ranging from Tay-Sachs to Cystic Fibrosis to Sickle Cell disease. The process offers expectant parents the opportunity to screen for genetic diseases in their offspring before pregnancy is established, rather than being confronted with unwelcome news later in pregnancy, when conventional genetic testing such as amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling are typically performed.
How the Test Works
Intended parents can order the test through PRC and submit a saliva sample for genetic testing, with results returned in four to six weeks. This test costs $350 per person (or $700 per couple), and it is covered by most insurance. It is a suitable replacement for dozens of expensive blood tests often not covered by insurance.
If test results indicate that mother and father are carriers of certain recessive genes, the couple’s next option is to undergo in vitro fertilization and an embryo biopsy and diagnostic process called microarray pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD).
Approximately 10 percent of infants born with genetic disease die in infancy. Many others often face lifelong suffering and millions of hours and dollars each in specialized caregiving and medical treatment. This five-minute saliva test can helps thousands of families avoid such anguish.