Literature Review

Parents with Children with Epilepsy Want Genetic Testing

Questionnaires suggest even parents from affected families who don’t have offspring with epilepsy want to know their risk.


In this study, investigators asked 77 parents who had children with epilepsy and 173 parents without affected offspring who were from families that included individuals with the disease if they were interested in genetic testing for their offspring. Among families with affected children, 71% to 86% expressed interest in diagnostic testing. By comparison, 53% to 74% of parents who had no affected children expressed interest in predictive genetic testing. Among parents, there was strong agreement regarding an interest in genetic testing for themselves versus their offspring (90%-94%). However, mothers and fathers only expressed moderate agreement in their interest for a test that had clinical utility, and only a “fair” interest in genetic testing if there was no clinical utility.

Caminiti CB, Hesdorffer DC, Shostak S, et al. Parents’ interest in genetic testing of their offspring in multiplex epilepsy families. Epilepsia. 2016;57(2):279-287.

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