Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  • Why should I do genetic testing?

    Genetic testing is a proactive way to understand our health, and provides us with the necessary knowledge to plan our family’s healthcare management with a peace of mind. Making informed decisions about our health and lifestyle choices as a family can help in the prevention, monitoring and treatment of potential conditions.

  • What is the Genscreen® service – PlumCare DNA Advisor?

    PlumCare DNA Advisor specializes in providing genetic testing by DNA sequencing to help us make better life choices. Our mission is to gather high quality and reliable genetic testing capabilities from around the world for consumers in Asia. Through the testing services provided, Genscreen® empowers individuals to take control of their health destiny for disease prevention and early detection.

    Using Whole Exome Sequencing (WES), PlumCare DNA Advisor provides genetic testing for families. Utilizing the latest cutting-edge DNA sequencing platform, PlumCare DNA Advisor analyses the genetic makeup of every individual in the family for the risk of developing certain hereditary conditions which are actionable clinically. In some cases, if the condition is detected early, the manifestation of symptoms can be managed or even prevented with conventional medical interventions, pharmacological therapies and/or lifestyle changes.

  • What is Whole Exome Sequencing (WES)?

    Our DNA makes up our genome which contains the genes that tell our body how to function. Each gene further consists of smaller units called exons, or collectively the exome. Our exome contains approximately 20,000 genes.

    WES is the process of finding out the exact composition or sequence of our exome. Although the exome makes up only a small part of our total genome (approximately 1-2%), nearly 85% of disease-causing DNA variations are found here. WES testing provides us with a cost-effective way of collecting a large amount of actionable genomic information. This service is a way to gain a wealth of personal health information at a low cost. Other disease panel screening service-providers may charge up to US$2,500 per person, and these test for fewer inherited diseases.

  • When should I go for this screening?

    You and your family can be tested any time at your convenience. However, early testing is recommended so that you and your family can take steps to delay, manage or even prevent the onset of potential condition(s) that you may be predisposed to as soon as possible.

  • Will I require genetic testing even if I have no family history of genetic conditions or cancers?

    We recommend families who are interested in gaining more powerful insights about their health to take up this service so that you can take preventive steps in managing your lifestyle. According to an article published in the Straits Times, in Singapore, 44% of patients with ovarian cancer who have the BRCA variant have no family members with breast or ovarian cancers. Hence, it is important that clients understand that only 5-10%1of cancers are hereditary.

    Source: http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/jolie-effect-more-in-singapore-doing-gene-test-for-cancer

  • Can I screen my parents (3 adults) instead of for my child?

    PlumCare DNA Advisor is suitable for everyone who is intending to take active control of their health. Any member of the family can be tested. However, it will be best if the family members being tested are biologically related. One of DNA Advisor’s strengths is that we are able to provide family testing for checks on inheritance patterns. By cross-analyzing the genetic information within the family, we can better understand whether a particular genetic variant has any significance in your family’s health.

  • When will I receive my PlumCare DNA Advisor results?

    An individualized comprehensive digital report will be available to you within 60 days from the date that your family's DNA specimens are accepted by the laboratory in the United States.*

    * Terms & conditions apply.

  • What will the results of this genetic test offer?

    Genetic testing gives us an insight into our genomic composition for risks. With this insight, we can adopt actionable healthcare measures to delay, manage or even prevent the onset of the condition that we may be predisposed to. We do not offer diagnosis nor treatment for genetic diseases. If you have previously been diagnosed with a condition, please refer to your physician for medical advice.

  • What should I do if it is a positive result?

    You will be encouraged to arrange a call with one of our genetic counsellors from PlumCare to understand your report. The genetic counsellor may further enquire on your family history and medical information so as to provide holistic advice on managing any possible lifestyle and/or dietary changes to mitigate health risks, or even suggest additional testing (where necessary) to prevent the development of certain conditions. This genetic counselling session is a complimentary service for reports with positive results.

  • Who are the genetic counsellors and what can they do?

    Genetic counsellors are specially trained healthcare professionals with a background in medical genetics and counselling. They are able to explain the results, guide the family on what they can do now to mitigate health risks, and provide advice on lifestyle changes to manage, delay or even prevent the onset of the condition(s) that you are predisposed to.

  • What do I need to do if I want to enroll for PlumCare DNA Advisor?

    Call or email us to arrange for a personal consultation. Upon enrollment, a collection kit which includes either a saliva tube or a swab sponge, will be issued to each member of your family.

  • How do I collect the DNA specimen?

    DNA collection from adults and children above the age of 6 years old will be done using a saliva tube which is included in the collection kit. Collection from children younger than 6 years old will be done using a swab sponge.

1To know or not to know? Not the only question in familial breast cancer risk communication page. ResearchGate website. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/221776273. Accessed January 30, 2018.