The human genome project, completed in 2003, enabled a massive growth spurt in genetic science and medicine. Suddenly, the cost of performing, discovering, and developing genetic technologies, and applications was no longer an insurmountable barrier that only research institutions with massive grants and endless funding could tolerate. Pharmacogenomics is one of the offshoots of this explosion in genetic research and development, and one of the more emergent applications of pharmacogenomic testing has been pharmacogenomic testing for mental health and psychiatric drugs.
Understanding Psychiatric Pharmacogenomic Testing
An overly simple explanation of pharmacogenomics is that by analyzing and understanding and individual’s genetic makeup and how their genetics may affecttheir reactions and responses to certain medications or drug treatments, healthcare providers and patients can make more informed decisions about medications and healthcare overall. The use of pharmacogenomics for psychiatry is a particularly important application of genetic testing because the use of psychiatric meds by the average American is on the rise. From 2001 to 2010 use of psychotropic drugs increased by 22 percent, and the estimated cost of all these increased psychiatric medication being prescribed is estimated at more than $16 billion dollars.
There are number of different factors behind the rising increase in psychiatric drugs being prescribed, and while the factors are contested by many different people and from different perspectives, pharmacogenetic testing for psychiatric medicine offsets more than a few of the issues healthcare providers and patients may have with psychiatric medication.
Benefits of Using Genetic Testing For Psychiatric Medications
One of the largest issues when taking psychiatric medications is that it is often difficult to ascertain which medicines are going to be most effective, which typically leads to situations where a doctor will prescribe two or three different medications until the proper medication is identified. Psychiatric pharmacogenomic testing eliminates much of the guess work, PGx testing for psychiatry greatly reduces overall cost of prescription medications, but saves patients time, effort, and overall leads to much higher precision in prescribing. It is estimated that implementing psychiatric pharmacogenomic testing could save billions in healthcare costs each year, with exponential growth as genetic testing costs come down in concert.
For people who are currently on a regiment of psychiatric medications or are possibly considering taking psychiatric medication prescribed by a doctor, the benefits of genetic testing are multi-fold. Rather than trying out several different medications, all with varying side effects and lag time until efficacy, having your genetic profile analyzed will allow you and your provider to make more informed decisions.
Pharmacogenomics Greatly Reduce Adverse Drug Reactions
Another great benefit that patients find with genetic testing for psychiatric medications, is that it cuts down the risk for adverse drug reactions. Understanding what medications you are on and how those drugs might possibly contradict, or have a negative when combined is a concern of every healthcare provider, who typically take every step possible to reduce adverse drug combinations. Genetic testing allows for precision in prescribing, and can definitively tell you and your doctor, what medications are appropriate for you.
Genetic Testing for Psychiatric Medication: Find The Right Company
While there are a number of different options for genetic testing online, when it comes to choosing a PGx testing provider for psych meds, it’s important to establish that the genetic testing panel will evaluate the proper genetic traits and relevant medications. Dynamic DNA Labs offers a comprehensive genetic testing panel for psychiatric medications, that covers major classes of psychiatric medications people might be prescribed.
The genetic testing panel analyzes 11 genes and reports on 83 prescription drugs that are commonly and routinely prescribed for conditions ranging from depression, anxiety, ADHD, and a host of other mental health conditions that affect many Americans ( See image below for a full medication list).
Order A Genetic Testing Kit for Psychiatric Meds
Very often the tests may be covered by insurance, and for those who prefer to purchase the tests outright, there is no prescription or test order required to purchase. If you are interested in purchasing a genetic testing kit for psychiatric meds or in learning more about genetic testing for click below.