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Being your own Doctor for $20. Good or Bad?

Walgreen's is selling OTC DNA kits. You will be able to know the kind of diseases you're prone to have and your children.


Asked by Anonymous at 6:42 AM on May. 12, 2010 in Politics & Current Events

This question is closed.
Answers (8)
  • pppbbbttt. So you pay 20 buck for a cotton swab and an envelope, basically. And then hundreds more to get the results read? Nah, not worth ti.

    Answer by LokisMama at 7:48 AM on May. 12, 2010

  • Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 6:46 AM on May. 12, 2010

  • from the link above

    San Diego based Pathway Genomics will start selling its "Insight" personal genetic testing kits in Walgreens nationwide this Friday.

    Just spit, and send. The kits cost 20-30 bucks. For another 250, you'll get a detailed report that shows whether you have the genetic markers for more than 70 different diseases, including Parkinson's, breast cancer, and heart disease.


    Answer by Anonymous at 6:48 AM on May. 12, 2010

  • But how reliable are the results? And what do you do with them?

    "The dangers of the test is that it projects this is a crystal ball, that you'll actually learn usefull and actionable things from the test and that's just misleading," says Professor David Winickoff of UC Berkeley.

    Answer by Anonymous at 6:49 AM on May. 12, 2010

  • He says just because you have a marker for a disease doesn't mean you will develop that disease. Likewise if you get a clean bill of health, don't switch out the broccoli for Cheetohs.

    "They're very complex diseases and they're caused by a large number of genes and probably a large range of enviornmental factors. Simply to have one marker correlated with a disease tells you very little. It might tell u you have a 1-2% greater chance of getting the disease," says Winickoff.

    Answer by Anonymous at 6:49 AM on May. 12, 2010

  • "Most of health is determined by environmental factors like nutrition, exercise, and having [regular medical] check-ups."

    Winickoff says the "original genetic test" is still a good one--your family history of disease.

    If you do try the test, Winickoff recommends taking the results to your doctor or a genetic counselor to understand what the results really mean.

    Answer by Anonymous at 6:49 AM on May. 12, 2010

  • The FDA does not regulate these tests at this time, and this is causing doctors and geneticists to be worried about how the over-the-counter genetic tests will be interpreted by consumers who are untrained. Without a specific doctor, you may not be able to understand what the risks you find out from using the kit will actually mean in your life.

    What do you think about it? Also, I’m also wondering if these tests will have paternity testing capabilities. That might help some talk shows get their results for cheaper at least.

    Answer by Anonymous at 6:52 AM on May. 12, 2010

  • Basically like most other DNA tests. All they're selling over the counter is the collection kit. Hell we got that for free from a local 'safety' company that wanted to sell you a system to ID your child if they were ever missing.

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:39 AM on May. 12, 2010