Presented By: Carole Browner, Ph.D., MPH Department of Anthropology, Women's Studies and the Semel institute for Neuroscience and Human behavior UCLA Abstract Genetic tests
Carole Browner, Ph.D., MPH
Department of Anthropology, Women’s Studies and the Semel institute for Neuroscience and Human behavior
Genetic tests are more and more aggressively marketed directly to the public fueled by claims that simple genetic mechanisms may be at the core of many physiological, psychological and emotional processes, ostensibly complex behaviors, and most diseases in general. Within these broad socio-medical transformations, we studied patients with neurodegenerative symptoms who sought a diagnosis, and their neurologists. We considered the perceived value of genetic testing for both groups; the impact on patients receiving genetic diagnoses; which types of patients doctors thought would benefit from genetic diagnosis; and whether the ability to offer genetic testing reduced the doctors’ own anxieties and frustrations arising from working with patients whose progressive, ultimately fatal neurodegenerative diseases presently have no meaningful treatments or cures.
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