Genetic testing in heart muscle disease (cardiomyopathies)

A significant number of cardiomyopathies can be hereditary; a patient with cardiomyopathy can have abnormal gene that cause the disease, and the patient may pass the abnormal gene to his/her next generation.

Genetic test involves pre- /post-testing genetic counselling, and taking a blood test to study the genetic material of the patient to look for specific gene(s) that are known to cause disease. Genetic counselling would include comprehensive family history that spans at least 3 generation. Patient would be counselled on the importance, meaning and limitations of the genetic test result, and implication of the results to his/her family members that might share the same genetic material.

Genetic testing is a test of probability. To patient, if a disease-causing gene or probable culprit gene is identified, the result can potentially help to establish/confirm the diagnosis, and in some cases providing additional information on the severity and prognosis of the condition. To family members, a ‘positive’ genetic test can help to identify family members who are at risk of developing similar condition.

Genetic testing is available in our centre. Please book an appointment with us if you wish to know more.

Dr. Tang Hak Chiaw

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