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Patient Stories is taking a hiatus. We plan to be back in the fall with a third season. We would love to better understand our audience. If you could take 1 minute to fill out this survey, we would appreciate it! Check out past Patient Stories podcast episodes. Read Patient Stories on the Grey Genetics Patient Stories Page Support Patient Stories! …
 
While Carlos was studying Biology in the U.S., his father was diagnosed with Philadelphia Chromosome positive Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (Ph+ALL) in Mexico. The same condition which he’d just learned about in school and had captured his intellectual curiosity was also now very personal. Carlos shares how genetic testing opened up options for his fa…
 
A couple gets engaged. They are both of Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry and read that carrier testing is recommended. They rightly assume that the most likely outcome is that they will not be carriers for the same condition. The results are a shock: Both are carriers for Mucolipidosis Type IV. They know they will use this information to inform their fami…
 
When Layla was pregnant, she knew there was a 1 in 4 chance that her child would have Sickle Cell Disease. Routine newborn screening was done in London when Suki was 5 days old. She would be notified soon if her daughter Suki had Sickle Cell Disease, or even if she was a carrier and had Sickle Cell Trait. Like other parents, Layla was told that no …
 
Munique had suffered from pain since she was 4 years old, but it wasn’t until she was 15 years old that she finally received a diagnosis that explained why: Fabry Disease. After seeing multiple doctors, she, her father, and multiple other family members were finally diagnosed with Fabry Disease at the same time. In Brazil, treatment for Fabry was d…
 
Silvia’s son Nicky was born with a devastating condition called Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB). On her websites and in her books, she describes his skin as fragile as a butterfly’s wing which can blister at the slightest touch, causing pain and scarring and leading to disfigurement and disability. Today Nicky is 24 years old. Silvia shares how her pers…
 
As a junior in high school, Mikaela played varsity softball. When her performance started to decline and she wasn’t feeling well, she was initially told she likely had an ear infection. The second doctor she saw ordered a brain MRI to rule out a possible brain tumor. The third doctor she saw ordered a full body scan to rule out the possibility of a…
 
At her 20 week ultrasound, Chelsea learned of a likely diagnosis of Trisomy 18. Her Non-Invasive Prenatal Screening (NIPS) results then also came back positive for Trisomy 18. Chelsea and her husband Doug felt tremendous pressure from the genetic counselor and many doctors involved in her care to pursue amniocentesis. Chelsea and her husband sought…
 
Brianne Kirkpatrick returns to the podcast to give us an update on changes in direct-to-consumer (DTC) and ancestry genetic testing over the past two years. Some of the biggest changes: a greater awareness of privacy concerns and more resources and support for those affected by unexpected DNA discoveries. Brianne Kirkpatrick is a licensed and certi…
 
Mary had always experienced a lot of joint pain as a child. At fourteen, she realized that not everyone lived with chronic pain. As she got older, she had testing done to rule out a number of GI conditions and rheumatologic disorders. Two years ago, without finding an answer through doctors, she started doing research on her own and kept coming acr…
 
When Kathryn graduated from Northwestern University's Graduate Program in Genetic Counseling in 2009, high-risk programs related to GI Cancer were new, as was universal tumor testing. Kathryn shares how she worked with GIs to build cancer/high-risk GI programs in multiple locations. She discusses the strength of a multidisciplinary approach to pati…
 
Emily Richins and Chris Emineth connected through a Facebook support group for parents of children with Dravet Syndrome, a rare and severe form of epilepsy characterized by frequent, prolonged seizures, developmental delay, and other health problems. They share how Dravet has affected their lives and relationships, why the current Covid era is fami…
 
Certified genetic counselor Jamie L’Heureux shares her personal story of trying to collect family history information surrounding her father’s diagnosis of Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM), describing the challenges she encountered as well as obstacles to genetic counseling appointments and genetic testing. She also discusses how she is now using …
 
Leslie Ordal, MSc, CGC, is a certified genetic counselor who specializes in psychiatric genetic counseling. Leslie discusses the importance of risk assessment and counseling over any genetic testing related to mental illness, of helping people to understand and adapt to the contribution of genetics to their health or that of their family. Links and…
 
Chris Bombardier was born with a severe form of Hemophilia B. He was also an active, athletic kid, passionate about baseball. As a young adult, Chris became passionate about mountain climbing and set a goal of completing the Seven Summits (summiting the highest mountain on each continent). The recently released documentary, Bombardier Blood, follow…
 
When Karen Fieri was 30 years old, she had trouble healing after a hysterectomy. The pain that followed eventually led to a diagnosis of Mitochondrial Myopathy, a metabolic condition caused by a mutation in mitochondrial DNA. Looking back, it was easy to see that she’d always had some symptoms of the condition and had assumed that many of the thing…
 
After birth, Lucas spent ten days in the NICU due to a skull fracture he was born with. This was the window of opportunity for him to be diagnosed with Menkes Disease and receive treatment that would have meant a fairly normal outcome. Instead, Lucas went undiagnosed with this rare disease. His parents noted developmental delays at 4 months, regres…
 
Tiana Vega was born in May 2013. She was later to hit her milestones than her older sister, Aliya—but she kept hitting them. At 2 years of age, she finally learned to walk. Then she started to regress. When she was 2 ½ years old, she was finally diagnosed with Rett syndrome, an X-linked and progressive neurological disorder. Victor and Jeannette sh…
 
Last year, Maggie Chenard (aka “The Mindful NPE”) received ancestry testing as a gift from her adult children. Her results were not at all what she was expecting. She now identifies as an NPE (Not Parent Expected). She also learned that her ancestry is 50% Ashkenazi Jewish. This led her to find and participate in The BRCA Founder Outreach (BFOR) St…
 
Today, between episodes of Patient Stories, we are sharing an episode with you from another podcast, Once Upon a Gene. Host Effie Parks previously shared her story on Patient Stories: "New in the Family: Ford and CTNNB1." Effie then went on to start her own podcast. Once Upon a Gene is a podcast that explores the world of raising children with disa…
 
Janelle was diagnosed with MLH1-associated Lynch syndrome as a young adult. With a background in pre-med and public health, she has found it easier than some to navigate the healthcare system and make sure she is getting the screenings that she needs. But she has also run into a lot of ignorance and ageism along the way. Working in the field of onc…
 
When Dawn was 15 years old, her parents were given a diagnosis for her which explained why her experience with puberty was different from that of other girls her age. Following the recommendations of doctors at the time, her parents told her that she did not have a uterus and would not be able to have biological children—but did not share the diagn…
 
Bryana Rivers is a second year genetic counseling student in the University of Cincinnati Genetic Counseling Program. As an African American female in a field that is >90% White, Bryana has a passion for increasing diversity within the profession of genetic counseling. Bryana talks about possible reasons for the lack of diversity within the field, …
 
Patient stories is taking a hiatus. We will be back in July with a second season and already have some interviews recorded that we are excited to share with you. We would also love to hear from our audience as we plan our second season! Why do you listen? What have you liked best? What would you like to hear more of? We’ve created a google form to …
 
When Rebecca Alexander was 12 years old, she had trouble seeing the blackboard. She made her way from an optometrist to an ophthalmologist and was eventually diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP). Her parents were told that she would be blind by the time she was an adult. Rebecca also had a cookie bite of hearing loss. Through high school, she w…
 
As a newborn, Anne Fricke’s second daughter Freya had trouble nursing, slept really soundly, and had hypotonia (low muscle tone). At three and a half months of age, Freya was diagnosed with Prader-Willi syndrome. Anne shares her family’s experience with Freya’s initial diagnosis, how she found support within the Prader-Willi community, and what the…
 
Tracy Milgram-Posner learned that she carried a BRCA2 mutation when she was just 21 years old. In the pre-Angelina Jolie era, feeling alone and isolated, she started a FacebookGroup, BRCAStrong, which has since grown into a 501(c)(3) non-profit whose mission is “To support, educate, inspire and empower Previvors and Survivors. To eliminate the feel…
 
Embree Ray Alexander was born June 11, 2017 and was healthy and happy for the first part of her life. Around seven months of age, it started to become clear that something was wrong. An MRI of the brain suggested a type of leukodystrophy, initially thought to be Tay Sachs disease. At eleven months of age, she was diagnosed with Sandhoff disease, an…
 
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