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Review article

Psychological Factors Related to Genetic Testing

Nataša JOKIĆ-BEGIĆ orcid id ; Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Zagreb
Lidija ARAMBAŠIĆ ; Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Zagreb

Full text: croatian pdf 208 Kb

page 355-375

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Genetic testing is a medical procedure that enables detection
of inherited disorders and risk factors for certain pathological
processes. Its application, which will likely be part of standard
medical care in the future, opens up many psychological,
philosophical, ethical, legal and other questions concerning
the gains and risks associated with genetic diagnostics. Three
types of genetic testing – diagnostic, predictive and carrier –
are described here together with their purpose, mode of
implementation and a list of some of the diseases which they
might detect. In addition, results of many contemporary studies
exploring predictors in the decision-making process "for" and
"against" genetic testing are presented. Finally, there is a
discussion of results obtained in studies investigating
emotional, behavioral and social outcomes of genetic testing
and the psychological consequences of the results of such a
medical procedure. A review of the literature does not indicate
any long-term effects of information obtained by genetic
testing and suggests that emotional reactions are milder and
more short-term than expected, no matter what kind of genetic
testing is used. In addition, behavioral outcomes are often not
in accordance with the pre-testing intention. The article
concludes with a discussion on methodological difficulties in
this field, suggestions of guidelines for future studies and
practical recommendations for clinical work.


genetic testing, psychological implications of genetic testing

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