Why is it Important for My Obstetrician to Know About My Ethnic Origin?
Some genetic diseases are inherited more commonly in certain ethnic groups.
For example the carrier frequency of the Tay-Sachs gene in the Ashkenazi Jewish population is in the range of 1/36.
There are currently about 19 Jewish Genetics disorders that are picked up in the Jewish Genetic screening panel. French Canadians more commonly carry Tay Sachs. Mediterranean patients such as Greeks and Italians often carry the gene for Beta Thalassemia, Asians carry alpha and beta thalessemias, and African-Americans carry a higher risk of sickle cell disease.
Make sure you speak with your Obstetrician about a detailed family tree and be sure to go over ethnicity for you and your partner. This should preferably be done before you are pregnant, and if not, as soon as you find out that you are expecting.
THINKING ABOUT GETTING PREGNANT OR HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT YOUR PREGNANCY?
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