Untangling my DNA: Elevated Risk Factors for Diseases


Right! So back to the DNA results from 23andme.com (for those of you who asked what the company name was). There’s a lot to go through in the health section. They check for your risk related to over 240+ health conditions and assess if you have a typical, decreased, or elevated risk factor for each one.

Well, I have those results. The good news is that I do NOT have the breast cancer mutations that are so nasty (you know, the ones Angelina Jolie had that caused her to remove her breasts). So that’s good. BUT, there were quite a few health conditions that were elevated that made me uncomfortable–one was Alzheimers, another was Schizophrenia, and another was Lupus!

Here are the rest of the ones I had genetic markers for. None of them are pretty. Doesn’t mean I’ll get ANY of them; however, I have genetic markers that predispose me to those diseases. Scary! Of course, environmental and lifestyle factors play a role. Still…these things are good to know, I figure.

Mind you, for the majority of my life I’ve not had to go to doctors often compared to most people. I’ve struggled with bronchitis/asthma my whole life, and as for surgeries, I’ve had my tonsils taken out, gall bladder removed, a D & C, and two C-sections. Oh, and a skull fracture (when I was a little kid).

Here are the health conditions I have elevated risk factors for. I’ve added a + sign to the ones I already suffer from: Alzheimer’s Disease, Chronic Kidney Disease* (*this actually runs strong on my birth mother’s side of the family, according to the genealogical records I have on hand), Celiac Disease (I used to be allergic to wheat/wheat products when I was a kid and had to take allergy shots. Maybe I should go gluten free), Ulcerative Colitis, Lupus (Systemic Lupus Erythematosus), Scleroderma (Limited Cutaneous Type), Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm, Alcohol Dependence (honestly, alcohol is okay, but I go long periods of time without drinking anything. If I never drank alcohol again, it wouldn’t matter. I’m not hooked on it. Chocolate, however, is another matter!), Asthma+ (already have this and bronchitis–my whole LIFE!), Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia, Dupuytren’s Disease, Gout, Hay Fever+ (Allergic Rhinitis), Hodgkin Lymphoma, High Blood Pressure (Hypertension), Keloid, Kidney Stones, Obesity  (I’ve struggled with my weight my entire life!), Ovarian Cancer, Primary Biliary Cirrhosis, Myeloproliferative Neoplasms, Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease+ (diagnosed last October),  and Sjögren’s Syndrome.

Well now, aren’t those results a big ray of sunshine? *laughs* Seriously…it seems like a lot, but as I said, they check for over 240 diseases/health conditions and the rest I ranked either typical or decreased risk.

Still, if I had to pick some nasty ones, this list is pretty darned nasty! I mean…the cancers alone, right? *shudder* Although my risk for breast cancer is decreased compared to average. I also have a higher-risk marker for hypothyroidism along with 3 typical markers and 1 lower-risk marker, so it could go either way. Given my current situation, it appears the higher-risk marker has won out! :-/

Anyway…isn’t this amazing? Better to know these things than be in the dark over them!    


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