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Genetic Testing: Is It Better Not To Know?

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Sasa Woodruff loves food—she’s been accused of having far too many cookbooks. But in 2019, a phone call from an unknown caller changed her relationship to eating.

A genetic counselor called to tell her that she had a rare genetic mutation which could lead to a lethal form of stomach cancer.

The only way to prevent that cancer was to get her stomach surgically removed.

While she’s now grateful for the information that genetic testing gave her, Woodruff’s story raises questions about what kind of information patients should have and how they can use it.

Professor of law and philosophy at Duke University, Nita Farahany and professor of law and biosciences at Stanford University, Hank Greely discuss the implications of growing access to genetic testing and how to weigh health decisions.

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