This decade has seen an explosion in research on medical genetics. The knowledge gained by this research, while still in its infancy, has provided many insights into the medical management of chronic pain, addiction, weight loss, obesity, exercise, psychiatric health and cardiovascular wellness to name a few. At Accurate Clinic we strive to engage the latest research advances in the genetic assessment and management of the medical conditions we treat.
Medical Genetics and Weight Loss and Obesity
Recent research has provided new understanding of how people have individual variations in how they metabolize foods, including carbohydrates and fats, and how these variations impact the tendency towards obesity. Understanding the genetic metabolic variants allows more effective dietary planning for greater success in losing weight. Our knowedge of genetics as it relates to eating behavior and obesity is also rapidly expanding. Maladaptive eating behaviors, especially addictive-like eating disorders such as food cravings and binge eating have genetic factors and understanding these genetic factors allows the potential for effective treatments to manage the eating behaviors. For those with obesity associated eating disorders, successful long term weight loss will be impossible if the eating behaviors are not addressed along with dietary changes. In our weight loss program efforts are made to treat both the dietary and the eating behaviors associated with obesity to secure long term, effective weight loss.
Medical Genetics and Personal Exercise Training
Genetic testing also offers insights into how individuals respond differently to different forms of exercise. These insights allow for greater personalization of an exercise regimen to improve effectiveness of training. Based on a person’s genetic variants they may respond better to high intensity vs lower intensity workouts. With resistance training, a person’s genetic variants in fast vs slow twitch muscle fibers can predict potential benefits with heavier vs lighter loads. Understanding one’s genetic variants may offer the competitive edge in determining which activities they may perform best. Altogether, genetic testing can help design a more idealized, individual exercise regimen.
Medical Genetics and Drug Metabolism
At Accurate Cinic we have been providing medical genetic testing for our patients since before 2012 and Dr. Ehlenberger has published two articles in the field of chronic pain and genetics. Genetic testing is simple and painless and requires only a quick swab of saliva. One of the definitive benefits of genetic testing includes the evaluation of how each person individually metabolizes medications. This knowledge allow greater safety in predicting drug-drug interactions as well as the prediction of effectiveness of medication and potential for side effects.
Medical Genetics and Chronic Pain
Over the last decade we have learned that genetic testing helps predicts a persons sensitivity to pain and allows for insights into tailoring medication management of pain. Ongoing research at Accurate Clinic is investigating the genetic role of developing tolerance to opioid pain medications as well as the genetic impact of dosing requirements for individual opioid medications. As part of our coordinated care program with our patients managing physicians, we also share the results and implications of our genetic testing with our patients pharmacist and other clincians to enhance the safety of medication prescribing.
Medical Genetics, Psychiatry and Depression
We offer routine genetic testing to all of our patients with depression. This testing helps identify those individuals who are genetically impaired in their ability to manufacture and maintain serotonin and other neurotransmitters that play critical roles in maintaining a healthy mood. Knowledge of possible impairments allows for safe and effective means of adapting treatment to improve treatment outcomes, especially in depression. Furthermore, common genetic variants impact the metabolism, side effect profiles and effectiveness of many of the commonly prescribed psychiatric medications. This knowledge can have a very significant impact on improving the safety and effectiveness of managing psychiatric conditions.