Testing the Children: Do Non-Genetic Health-Care Providers Differ in Their Decision to Advise Genetic Presymptomatic Testing on Minors? A Cross-Sectional Study in Five Countries in the European Union
Research output: Contribution to journal › Article
Background: Within Europe many guidelines exist regarding the genetic testing of minors. Predictive and presymptomatic genetic testing of minors is recommended for disorders for which medical intervention/preventive measures exist, and for which early detection improves future medical health. Aim: This study, which is part of the larger 5th EU-framework "genetic education'' (GenEd) study, aimed to evaluate the self-reported responses of nongenetic health-care providers in five different EU countries (Germany, France, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands) when confronted with a parent requesting presymptomatic testing on a minor child for a treatable disease. Methods: A cross-sectional study design using postal, structured scenario-based questionnaires that were sent to 8129 general practitioners (GPs) and pediatricians, between July 2004 and October 2004, addressing self-reported management of a genetic case for which early medical intervention during childhood is beneficial, involving a minor. Results: Most practitioners agreed on testing the oldest child, aged 12 years (81.5% for GPs and 87.2% for pediatricians), and not testing the youngest child, aged 6 months (72.6% for GPs and 61.3% for pediatricians). After multivariate adjustment there were statistical differences between countries in recommending a genetic test for the child at the age of 8 years. Pediatricians in France (50%) and Germany (58%) would recommend a test, whereas in the United Kingdom (22%), Sweden (30%), and the Netherlands (32%) they would not. Conclusion: Even though presymptomatic genetic testing in minors is recommended for disorders for which medical intervention exists, EU physicians are uncertain at what age starting to do so in young children.
|Research areas and keywords||
Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY
|Journal||Genetic Testing and Molecular Biomarkers|
|Publication status||Published - 2009|