KHN Columnist Speaks to Personal Decision of Genetic Testing for Dementia



Kaiser Health News columnist Judith Graham explores the decision to pursue genetic testing in a personal column about family histories with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD).

Graham shares her familial connections to dementia, including her father’s death from Alzheimer’s and her late sister’s diagnosis of FTD at age 58. She also shares the thoughts of others who have family ties to ADRD, underscoring that the decision to undergo genetic testing is a personal one.

The column also highlights the anxiety associated with familial dementia and the ways in which those who decided not to be tested have learned to cope with the idea of an uncertain future. Graham writes that experts suggest those considering testing first discuss the option in-depth with a genetic counselor.

AFTD recently hosted an educational webinar about FTD and family history and the role of family counseling with Emily Dwosh, of the University of British Columbia (UBC) Hospital Clinic for Alzheimer’s disease and Related Disorders. You can view the webinar here.

Click here to read Graham’s column on the New York Times’ website.