Effects of Hypothetical Type 2 Diabetes Genetic Testing on Parents' Efforts to Prevent Diabetes in Children

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Abstract

Objective.

To examine the effect of hypothetical genetic susceptibility test results on diabetic parents' intention to prevent type 2 diabetes (T2D) in their children.

Methods.

Parents with T2D indicated their intention to prevent T2D in their youngest child at baseline and after a hypothetical positive and negative T2D genetic test result. We calculated mean/median “preventive intention scores” for each scenario and examined the association between parents' score change and parent/child characteristics.

Results.

A total of 63% of parents reported that their child had “almost no risk” or “slight risk” of developing T2D. Parents' median baseline preventive intention score was 8. It increased to 10 after a positive test result and decreased to 5 after a negative test result.

Conclusions.

Negative T2D genetic susceptibility test results may decrease diabetic parents' intentions to prevent T2D for their children. Future research studies in a real-life clinical context should examine this phenomenon.

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