DNA screening not always useful for predicting health problems

Let’s say you have a whole lot of money.

Let’s say you have so much money that, even after you’ve purchased a basketball team and a chain of movie theaters, you still have enough cash left over to invest in a maverick approach to your own health care. Should you sink an unspecified sum into ordering every test you can find in the off chance that sooner or later you’re going to detect something valuable?

Mark Cuban says “yes.”

In a series of tweets posted at the beginning of this month, the media baron and basketball franchisee admonished his followers that, if they were sufficiently affluent, they should order blood tests for “everything available” on a quarterly basis in order to establish a baseline for their own health. In the event of some deviation from the any given person’s aggregate normal values, it might detect some abnormality earlier than it would otherwise be found when it started creating symptoms.

First of all, there is a lot of “everything available” to be ordered. While some tests have merit as tools to screen for illness or assess risk of developing diseases later on (examples would include tests of liver function or fasting levels of sugar or blood lipids), others are only used as part of a more in-depth workup of a problem once it’s detected.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis. Read full, original post: DNA Testing Is a Slippery Slope

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