Why Genetic Testing for Mental Health Meds is Important

Posted by ainsleigh @ainsleigh, Feb 11, 2019

@ainsleigh– Recently we learned that my 19 year old Grandson (who has been diagnosed with depression, panic attacks and anxiety) has not been
on the right medication. In fact the one he has been on was in the red (wrong) zone as opposed to green or yellow. Needless-to-say he is tapering off it in preparation to be put on one in the green zone! We did learn this through the Genetic Testing. If you are able to access this testing I would really recommend it!
Best wishes
Ainsleigh

@ainsleigh – Good morning @ainsleigh. Would you mind explaining what the test is and what the colors and zones mean? Thank you.

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@merpreb– Hi Merry- This test was done through CAMH in Toronto and is called the Impact Study but I believe this testing is done in many places.
The purpose is to determine through genetic testing which psychotropic medications are most helpful (or not) with mental health problems. The green as I called it means it is ok to use as directed. The yellow means to use with caution. The red means to use with increased caution and with more frequent monitoring. Think of traffic lights- green is go-yellow is caution and red is stop. My Grandson was on the only one that came up in the "red" category.
I believe the test looks at how a person's liver metabolizes the drugs I hope this is helpful.
Best wishes
Ainsleigh

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@ainsleigh– Hi! Great information. I didn't know that this tests was available. It would save a lot of time vs being a guinea pig, trying different meds. Thank you

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@merpreb– You are welcome Merry. It was from another member of our Connect group that I was fortunate to learn about the genetic testing so I am very grateful as it did enable us to get my Grandson tested. If you google Mayo Clinic genetic testing it tells the various ways it is being used. To me it seems like a wonderful tool for those struggling with mental health issues.
Best wishes
Ainsleigh

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Hi, I'm new to this board and am wondering if any of you have had success with genetic testing for depression? My PA doesn't recommend it – says it's too expensive and test results can limit what insurance companies will cover. Would appreciate your feedback.
I've been on Effexor for 25 years and am in the process of weaning myself off. I HATE Effexor!!! I've tried to get off of it in the past and ended up going back on it due to the side effects. I've been on 75 MG for years. I've gone to 37.50 for the past 7 days and now and taking the 37.50 every other day for 7 days. On the 15th day I'll start on Lexapro. Have any of you had success with Lexapro? Thanks for any advice you can give me.

Liked by sears

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Hi @cookie6845– In the case of my Grandson it was done through CAMH in Toronto (Impact Study) and was free. It showed he was on the wrong med. and as a result is now on a correct one for him so it was well worthwhile and he seems to be doing well.
Best wishes
Ainsleigh

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We used a service called Genomind. It was hugely helpful for our daughter. It basically looks at the person’s chemical makeup and while it won’t tell you which meds will work best, it WILL tell you which meds are likely to be negative. It’s shocking that doctors are not required to do this testing before putting people on drugs. It’s a quick saliva swap and you get a great printout with details. Highly recommend it

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hi mpm1- We used CAMH (Canadian Association for Mental Health). Their Impact Study re genes and medications was free.( If some places charge
insurance plans may cover the cost.) It did tell which meds would work best as well as if it could be negative.
Ainsleigh

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Has anyone had the blood test/saliva test to determine what medications would be of value for you?

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@summertime4

Has anyone had the blood test/saliva test to determine what medications would be of value for you?

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Hi @summertime4, you'll notice that I moved your message to this existing discussion called "Why Genetic Testing for Mental Health Meds is Important." I did this so you can meet others who are talking about gene testing and how it can help determine the medications that may and likely won't help you.

In addition to the information that @ainsleigh @rachel123 and @mpm1 shared, I'd also like to bring @wsh66 and @johnbishop into this discussion. Steve has used GeneSight I believe and John used Mayo's GeneGuide and I hope they'll share their experiences.

Summertime, has your doctor recommended that you get gene testing done or was this something you are exploring to gather info?

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@colleenyoung

Hi @summertime4, you'll notice that I moved your message to this existing discussion called "Why Genetic Testing for Mental Health Meds is Important." I did this so you can meet others who are talking about gene testing and how it can help determine the medications that may and likely won't help you.

In addition to the information that @ainsleigh @rachel123 and @mpm1 shared, I'd also like to bring @wsh66 and @johnbishop into this discussion. Steve has used GeneSight I believe and John used Mayo's GeneGuide and I hope they'll share their experiences.

Summertime, has your doctor recommended that you get gene testing done or was this something you are exploring to gather info?

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Search Genesight testing. You will find links for patients, and doctors. Based on your Gene's, you'll submit a swab, they can tell which meds your body will metabolize well and which you won't. If you can't metabolize a certain drug you won't benefit from taking it
Your doctor must register with Genesight. It's free and it takes about 15 minutes. If your doctor doesn't want to do this, (they can be stubborn or just to busy), they will furnish a list of doctors based on your zipcode. That doctor will explain your results and give you a copy of your report that you can have entered into your medical record. This test is most useful for selecting psychotropic and analgesic medications. Most insurance and Medicare will cover it. I found it to be a very valuable service.

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@summertime4

Has anyone had the blood test/saliva test to determine what medications would be of value for you?

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Hi @summertime4 — I had the Mayo Clinic GeneGuide and thought it was excellent. What I liked about it was the online tools and the educational aspect of learning more about my genetics. They do a great job of taking you through each section and you get a really detailed report when it's done.

Here's the information on what's included – https://www.mayoclinic.org/mayoclinic-geneguide#included

My test didn't show much as far as medications – most showed that I would metabolized normally. I did find out I am an increased risk for Age Related Macular Degeneration (Genes CFH 1, ARMS2 1).

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@wsh66 Thank you Collen for moving me to this sight. Yes, the psychiatric nurse took a saliva sample 2 weeks ago and we just met by tele something on the computer. She had the results from my test. Very interesting. The two medications I have been on are not likely benefiting me. I knew that. That was the reason I sought out a new provider. She went over it with me the best she could via computer. She will also be sending me a copy of the results. She sent in a prescription for another medication which is more in line of what can benefit me. She prescribed Trintellix, which is a fairly new psychotropic medication which may help with depression and anxiety. I am eager to read posts from others who have also had the Genesight testing done.

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great news genesight testing sure beats the psychotropic Med Wheel of Fortune we've been on for so many years.

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Why aren’t doctors more on board with this testing?

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