I have no medical past. I have no genetic history. When doctor’s forms ask for a family history, I have nothing to give them. I was adopted and have sketchy (at-best) information from my biological parents. I’d like to say that it doesn’t bother me…that I don’t care that my history starts with me…but I do care. I care that if I was a carrier for something I could pass it on to my children. I care that something I have no clue about now could manifest later. I care about my genetics, so when I was offered a complimentary JScreen testing kit, I jumped at the chance.
After requesting an at-home screening kit from JScreen ($99), a kit is sent to your home with explicit directions. The only sample they need is saliva so no need to mess around with blood or anything else gross. They even include special return packaging designed for medical specimens. The JScreen genetic counselors stay in touch via email. They even require you to watch a video online to help prepare you if the results come back that you are a carrier.
I received my findings about 2-3 weeks after sending my kit back. They found that I was not a carrier for any of the diseases and conditions they tested for. While so little is known about my medical family history, it is nice to be able to at least have a little more knowledge, even if it is to be able to say what I don’t have.
For anyone who has questions about their family heritage, has incomplete information, is Jewish, or just wants more definitive genetic information I’d recommend going through the JScreen process. It was easy, fast, and painless. And it gave me some information I would never have known.